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Few people in the world know as much about the life and art of Georgia O’Keeffe as Barbara Buhler Lynes, who resigned Friday after years as curator and director of the research center at the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe.

Museum officials declined to say why Lynes stepped down, and Lynes could not immediately be reached for comment.

Lynes said in a statement issued by the museum that she enjoyed her time there and leaves with deep admiration for the director, staff and board members.

“Serving the museum has been an illuminating experience, and I look forward to pursuing new projects and opportunities,” she said.

Lynes resignation came on opening day of a new exhibit that highlights the importance of O’Keeffe’s camping and rafting trips through the Southwest and the inspiration the treks provided for her art.

For more than a decade, Lynes was the driving force behind more than 30 of the museum’s exhibitions. She organized several symposiums at the research center that attracted scholars from across the country and became the museum’s first curator in 1999, two years after its opening.

The museum is the largest single repository of O’Keeffe’s work in the world. Its collection is made up of more than 3,000 works, including 1,149 O’Keeffe paintings, drawings and sculptures that date from 1901 to 1984, the year O’Keeffe was forced into retirement due to failing eyesight.

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