Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, New Mexico school, resolve differences over use of name

O’Keeffe museum, NM school patch up differences

SANTA FE, N.M. — The Georgia O’Keeffe Museum and an Albuquerque school named after the artist have patched up their differences over the use of her name.

Museum officials had e-mailed Georgia O’Keeffe Elementary School with concerns about possible trademark infringement, but the matter was resolved at a meeting with the school principal.

“The museum does not object to the elementary school’s use of Georgia O’Keeffe’s name, nor do we object to the selling of T-shirts that feature the school’s name for fundraising purposes,” interim director Carl Brown said in a statement Monday.

The statement said Brown had conveyed the museum’s “regret over the misinterpretation of issues” in the correspondence with the school.

Ryan Stark, a spokesman for the museum, said Tuesday officials had no comment beyond the statement.

It said the museum was “pleased and proud” that the school is named after O’Keeffe and praised its academic record and accomplishments.

“They were just very kind and said, ‘Let’s work together and make it a win-win situation,’” Principal Lucinda Sanchez said of the July 31 meeting.

The school and museum will work together on art projects for students, she said.

“I just think, especially for our kids, that they need to see adults collaborate and come to some solutions,” she said.

Sanchez said museum officials made it clear the school does not need permission to put the school’s name on items given to students or pay a fee when such items are sold.

The principal and PTA president had been so alarmed by the apparent flap that they raised the possibility of changing the school’s name.

The school was named after the artist when it opened in 1988. One of the foremost American painters, O’Keeffe lived for 40 years in northern New Mexico. She died in Santa Fe in 1986.

The school has been operating in portable buildings, and permanent facilities are being built.

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