No wonder people keep asking Lynn Diamond Mobley if she’s Georgia O’Keeffe’s daughter — or even Georgia O’Keefe.
As she got older, Mobley was a visual artist herself, developing the same shriveled face, questioning eyes and wry smile that O’Keeffe is known for.
The Santa Fe resident died earlier this month after battling cancer, her daughter Tracy Mobley-Martinez said. Mobley is 82 years old.
Lynn Diamond was born in Portland, Oregon on June 22, 1939, and a few years later moved with her family to Lafayette, Indiana, where she grew up. Her sister Eleanor Haines said she may have developed her love of water there, as she enjoys frolicking in the ditches and waterways near her home.
Haynes said her sister’s love for water may be the same as “why everyone in the Midwest loves water — because you don’t see much water.”
She said that her sister developed a strong interest in horse riding and painting since she was a child, and took art classes since she was a child.
Later, Mobley studied English literature at the University of Colorado at Boulder and wrote for the university newspaper, Haynes said. But she wasn’t sure if her sister wanted to be a writer.
“I don’t think she has any ego [about writing] When she was a kid,” Mobley-Martinez said of her mother. “No, ‘Oh my God, I have to be a writer. ‘ “
While at the University of Colorado, Diamond met and married Jack Mobley, who later divorced. The two had their only child in 1962. Over the years, the family moved around the country, including stops in Georgia and Florida. She lived in Florida on and off for decades.
Mobley-Martinez, Editor new mexican Pasatiempo magazine said her mother painted on and off throughout her life, selling her acrylics and pottery. Mobley enjoys painting beach scenes, seascapes, and other subjects on and around the water. She also painted sunsets, animals, and desert landscapes reminiscent of New Mexico landscapes.
Haynes said she first visited Santa Fe as a child on a road trip with relatives. That visit sparked a love of travel. Not surprisingly, this terrestrial creature who seldom swims but loves to paint the ocean often goes on sailing vacations.
Christy King, a longtime friend who knows Mobley, Florida, says the artist often takes pictures of the ocean by walking the beach and boardwalk near her home. Sometimes she paints based on the photos, Kim said.
“She loves the tranquility the ocean brings her,” she said.
She describes Mobley as an “independent” woman who helped her navigate her own divorce and found her own landscaping company.
“Her spirit helped me become who I am,” Kim said.
Mobley-Martinez said her mother was not a sentimental person. When Mobley-Martinez was in fourth grade, her mother painted a portrait of her wearing an elephant shirt. Years later, Mobley-Martinez asked her mother what happened to the painting.
“I painted on it,” she said.
In addition to her daughter and sister, Mobley is survived by a brother, Bob Dimond.