5 Fast Facts About #5WomenArtists Changing the World: Guerrilla Girls

Since 1985, the Guerrilla Girls, a collective of anonymous feminist activist artists, have brought widespread attention to the issues of sexism and racism in the art world. By disrupting mainstream culture and media with posters, billboards, publications, social media, public appearances, and exhibitions, this group calls out bias—and advocates for gender equity—in art, film, pop culture, and even politics.

A black and white ad that features an empty left hand side of the page and an all-caps vertical message on the right hand side that says "You're Seeing Less Than Half the Picture." Under that, also in all caps it reads "Without the vision of women artists and artists of color." Below that is Guerrila Girls name in bold caps followed by "Conscience of the Art World."

Guerrilla Girls, You’re seeing less than half the picture… (from the series “Guerrilla Girls Talk Back: The First Five Years, 1985–1990”), 1989; Photolithograph on paper, 17 x 22 in.; NMWA, Gift of Steven Scott, Baltimore, in honor of Wilhelmina Cole Holladay

Share your favorite women artists working for gender equity on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook using the hashtag #5WomenArtists and tagging @WomenInTheArts.

1. The Conscience of the Art World

The Guerrilla Girls address systemic discrimination by “revealing the understory, the subtext, the overlooked, and the downright unfair.” Though members obfuscate their identities by wearing gorilla masks and adopting the names of deceased—and often forgotten—women artists, the collective isn’t shy about shaming specific collectors, critics, museums, galleries, and publications for their problematic practices.

2. Creative Complaining

The group reveals shocking statistics and presents them with sardonic wit and surprising graphics. This strategy shakes audiences out of complacency and encourages action. One famous tactic—the museum “weenie count”—juxtaposes the percentage of female artists whose work is on view with the percentage of nude women, painted by men, on display. Try this revealing exercise during your next museum visit.

GG viewers

Visitors observe a selection of Guerrilla Girls' posters in NMWA's collection; Photo by Kevin Allen

hormone imbalance_melanin def

Guerrilla Girls, Hormone imbalance. Melanin deficiency. (from the series "Guerrilla Girls Talk Back: Portfolio 2"), 1993; Ink on postcard, 17 x 11 in.; NMWA, Gift of Steven Scott, Baltimore, in honor of Wilhelmina Cole Holladay

horror on natl mall_GG

Guerrilla Girls, Horror on the National Mall!, 2007; Color photolithograph on paper, 23 x 13 in.; NMWA, Gift of Susan Fisher Sterling in honor of Steven Scott; © Guerrilla Girls, Courtesy of www.guerrillagirls.com; Photo by Lee Stalsworth

Guerrilla Girls_pop quiz march

Guerrilla Girls, Guerrilla Girls' Pop Quiz (from the series "Guerrilla Girls Talk Back: The First Five Years, 1985–1990), 1987; Photolithograph on paper, 17 x 22 in.; NMWA, Gift of Steven Scott, Baltimore, in honor of Wilhelmina Cole Holladay

3. The Only “ism” Here is Feminism!

By 1989, when the Guerrilla Girls created When Racism And Sexism Are No Longer Fashionable…, NMWA already owned artworks by 34 of the artists named. Today, the museum’s collection features works by more than 1,000 artists, including 46 of those mentioned. Can you find artwork by artists on that list at your favorite museum? If not, ask why!

4. Not OK!

While the Guerrilla Girls initially addressed the lack of diversity in the New York art world, the group’s work has grown to point out inequities throughout the U.S. and abroad. In 2007, the collective collaborated with the Washington Post to admonish “boy crazy” federally funded D.C. arts institutions. The capitol city’s top art museums held very few pieces of art by women, with most of it kept in storage, not on display.

5. Guerrillas in Our Midst

NMWA hosted a special exhibition, The Guerrilla Girls Talk Back, in 2011, featuring a selection of the museum’s 84 works by the collective. Today, several of their works are on view in the thematic collection gallery “Rebels with a Cause”—swing by the museum to see them in person.

—Adrienne L. Gayoso is the senior educator at the National Museum of Women in the Arts.

Art and Social Messaging in More is More: Multiples

Artists’ multiples combine the temptation and affordability of retail with the creativity of fine art. More is More: Multiples, on view through September 22, presents dinner plates, totes, sunglasses, toys, and more by artists including Cindy Sherman, Mickalene Thomas, Barbara Kruger, Helen Marten, and Jiha Moon.


Many of the artists whose work is on view in More is More: Multiples have challenged stereotypical notions of womanhood since the 1970s, and their messages are still relevant today. Artists like Sophie Calle, Mickalene Thomas, Barbara Kruger, and the Guerrilla Girls have collaborated with design firms to produce objects that carry their social messaging forward. Working for gender and racial equality, these artists extend their ideas onto accessible retail objects, blurring lines between feminist art and consumer culture.

The topics of feminism and consumer culture call to mind the commodification of feminism over recent years. Big corporations may find success with “femvertising,” branding themselves as feminist while simultaneously ripping off female artists and underpaying employees. In an era of hashtags and campaigns, slogans like “The Future is Female” can be hollow signifiers: originating from the lesbian separatist movement, the phrase has become a symbol of superficial feel-good feminism.

Calle multiples

Sophie Calle, The Pig dinner service, 2013; Set of six porcelain plates with platinum text, each 10 5/8 in. diameter; Produced by Bernardaud; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Steven Scott, Baltimore; Image courtesy of Artware Editions

kruger your gaze

Barbara Kruger, Sunglasses, "Your gaze hits the side of my face", black with red arms; Plastic, 2 x 5 1/2 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Steven Scott, Baltimore, in honor of Chief Curator, Kathryn Wat; Courtesy of Artware Editions

mickalene tote multiples

Mickalene Thomas, Tote (front), 2009 (based on Mickalene Thomas, Lovely Six Foota, 2007); Printed cloth, 15 x 13 ½ x 3 ½ in.; Produced in partnership with the International Center of Photography; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Steven Scott, Baltimore; Photo by Lee Stalsworth

thomas multiples

Mickalene Thomas, Pocket mirror (front and back), 2016 (based on Mickalene Thomas, Din Facing Forward and Qusuquzah Standing Sideways, 2012); Brushed bronze with epoxy-coated artwork, 2 5/8 in. diameter; Produced by Third Drawer Down; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Steven Scott, Baltimore, in honor of National Museum of Women in the Arts Chief Curator Kathryn Wat; Photo by Lee Stalsworth

GG eraser single 2

Guerrilla Girls, Erase Discrimination, 1999; Ink on rubber, 1 1/8 x 2 1/2 x 1/4 in.; Collection of the Akron Art Museum, Museum Acquisition Fund; Image courtesy of the Akron Art Museum

How do these multiples differ from other retail objects? First, the objects in More is More are created by feminist artists, not corporations. They are authentic and witty, prompting reflection from viewers. In The Pig dinner service (2013), Sophie Calle (b. 1953) tells the story of an uncomfortable encounter with a man who insulted her. The story unfolds in small platinum type across six porcelain plates. “He leaned in to me and sought my lips. I pushed him away. ‘What makes you think I’d want to kiss you?’ I protested. ‘Well, anyway,’ he answered, ‘you eat like a pig.’” The demeaning nature of Calle’s experience stands in stark contrast to the delicate, pristine plates.

Sunglasses (2013) by Barbara Kruger (b. 1945) confront gender inequity with a simple message from her 1981 piece Untitled (Your gaze hits the side of my face). Printed on the sides of the shades, the phrase reminds us how women are objectified, while the sunglasses act as a shield—protecting the wearer from the “male gaze.” A tote bag (2009) and pocket mirror (2016) designed by Mickalene Thomas (b. 1971) address black beauty standards—by printing photos of black women on everyday objects, she celebrates their beauty and challenges Western beauty standards. The punny Erase Discrimination erasers (1999) by the Guerrilla Girls draw attention to inequality with frankness and humor.

While messages of female empowerment are used by corporations for appearance and profit, the objects in More is More present their messaging in creative, meaningful ways, leaving viewers engaged and challenged. “The problem is—the problem has always been—that feminism is not fun…. It’s complex and hard and it pisses people off,” said Andi Zeisler, founder of the feminist magazine Bitch. The multiples designed by Calle, Thomas, Kruger, and the Guerrilla Girls are witty and fun, but they also demonstrate the complexity and challenges of feminism.

—Louisa Potthast was the winter/spring 2019 publications and communications/marketing intern at the National Museum of Women in the Arts.

Director’s Desk: Rebels with a Cause

At the National Museum of Women in the Arts, we regularly rotate our collection to spark new thematic connections. This is an essential part of our curatorial philosophy. In a six-post series, I will explore the themes featured in our most recent collection installation.

Eight diverse women museum visitors are scattered throughout the NMWA collection galleries browsing the art on the walls.

NMWA visitors browse the newly reinstalled collection galleries; Photo by Kevin Allen

Throughout Western art history, women artists have distinguished themselves by persistently and successfully working within a system that has tried to suppress them and/or devalue their efforts. Not to be dismissed, they charted their own courses, petitioned for admittance to all-male art schools and artists’ organizations, and developed their own networks.

Beginning in the 20th century, many women artists boldly engaged with social issues and embraced their roles as advocates. These visionaries demonstrate that revolution comes in many forms, and their voices are alternately gracious, shrewd, fierce, and funny. In our “Rebels with a Cause” gallery, these artists—and often the individuals they portray—demonstrate that women have blazed trails and propelled change for centuries.

Gallery Highlights:

Born in 1552, Italian Renaissance painter Lavinia Fontana (1552–1614) is regarded as the first professional woman artist in Western Europe. Not only did she work within the same sphere as her male counterparts, but her husband gave up his artistic ambitions to manage her career and their household. Through eleven pregnancies, Fontana produced vibrant, detailed works, and eventually became a portraitist at the courts of several popes in Rome.

What If Women Ruled the World (2016), the six-foot neon sculpture by Yael Bartana (b. 1970), raises questions around gender equity, national identity, and the fate of humanity. The piece is inspired by Stanley Kubrick’s 1964 film Dr. Strangelove, in which a select group of powerful white men assemble to discuss options for survival in the face of an accidental nuclear Armageddon. Bartana’s piece proposes and proclaims a more peaceful alternative to this vision.


Lavinia Fontana, Portrait of a Noblewoman, ca. 1580; Oil on canvas, 45 1/4 x 35 1/4 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Wallace and Wilhelmina Holladay; Funding for the frame generously provided by the Texas State Committee; Photo by Lee Stalsworth

Yael Bartana, What if Women Ruled the World, 2016; Neon, 98 1/2 x 38 1/2 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Museum purchase, Belinda de Gaudemar Acquisition Fund, with additional support from the Members’ Acquisition Fund; © Yael Bartana; Photo by Lee Stalsworth

Yael Bartana, What if Women Ruled the World, 2016; Neon, 98 1/2 x 38 1/2 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Museum purchase, Belinda de Gaudemar Acquisition Fund, with additional support from the Members’ Acquisition Fund; © Yael Bartana; Photo by Lee Stalsworth


Amy Sherald, They call me Redbone but I’d rather be Strawberry Shortcake, 2009; Oil on canvas, 54 x 43 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Steven Scott, Baltimore, in honor of the artist and the 25th Anniversary of NMWA; © Amy Sherald


Guerrilla Girls, Do women Have to Be Naked update (from the series "Guerrilla Girls Talk Back: Portfolio 2"), 2005; Lithographic poster, 12 x 14 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Steven Scott, Baltimore, in honor of Wilhelmina Cole Holladay; © Guerrilla Girls, Courtesy www.guerrillagirls.com

Amy Sherald (b. 1973) reworks the traditional portrait format to reimagine the African American experience and challenge concepts of racial identity. Sherald’s haunting figures are expressionless and dressed in playful, costume-style clothing. In all of her works, including our painting They Call Me Redbone but I’d Rather be Strawberry Shortcake (2009), Sherald paints her subjects in grayscale, metaphorically removing their skin color and helping viewers imagine a world without restrictive stereotypes.

No discussion of “Rebels with a Cause” would be complete without the Guerrilla Girls, a group of famous—but anonymous—activist-artists who began wearing gorilla masks to call out sexism and racism in the art world of the 1980s. Several of their broadsides are on view at NMWA, including the well-known poster Do women have to be naked to get into the Met. Museum? (2005). Fortunately, as this and other works in this new themed gallery illustrate, women artists have found other ways to get their work noticed and their talent and ideas across.

—Susan Fisher Sterling is the Alice West Director of the National Museum of Women in the Arts.

Art Fix Friday: January 13, 2017

As the Women’s March on Washington approaches, The Huffington Post highlights NMWA’s Free Community Weekend and special “Nasty Women” tour on Sunday, January 22nd.

ARTnews shares a list of museum statements, closures, and admissions policy changes for January 20th and the following weekend.

Artists Jayna Zweiman and Krista Suh organized the Pussy Hat Project for the Women’s March on Washington, offering free patterns to knit hats.

Out of more than 5,000 art submissions by women, the Amplifier Foundation selects the eight poster designs for the march. Five of the posters are available for free online.

Front-Page Femmes

The Tate plans to appoint Maria Balshaw as its first female director since the museum’s founding in 1897.

The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum installs an enlarged version of a miniature painting titled I Need a Hero by Pakistani artist Ambreen Butt.

Brain Pickings examines Simone de Beauvoir’s perspective on the role of chance and choice in life.

Genevieve Gaignard “fearlessly examines America’s heart” through exploring different personas.

A crowdfunding campaign is underway to create a memorial for Fanny Cornforth’s unmarked grave. Cornforth was best known as one of Pre-Raphaelite painter Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s favorite models.

Juxtapoz features LaToya Ruby Frazier’s award-winning first book, The Notion of Family, exploring the economic decline of her hometown of Braddock, Pennsylvania.

Women Who Draw, a new website, showcases the work of women illustrators and allows the artists to highlight different aspects of their identity.

The Guardian shares ten books by “wild women” who transgressed social, personal, and literary boundaries, including works by Leonora Carrington, Margaret Cavendish, and Audre Lorde.

Daliyah Marie Arana, the four-year-old girl who has read more than 1,000 books, shadows Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden as “librarian for the day.”

Tracee Ellis Ross won a Golden Globe for her role in the television series Black-ish and dedicated her award to women of color.

La Medea, a new production by Brooklyn-based artist Yara Travieso, “combines dance, interactive theater, live music, film, and live broadcasting, creating a genre of art all its own.”

Artsy explores the importance of feminist art that transcends boundaries race, gender, and class.

Hyperallergic explores recent documentaries about well-known painters Elizabeth Murray and Carmen Herrera.

Shows We Want to See

The exhibition Room showcases 15 private, emotionally charged spaces created by women artists, including works by Nan Godin, Louise Bourgeois, and Francesca Woodman.

The Whitechapel Gallery commissioned the Guerrilla Girls to conduct a survey on gender and racial inequality in European art institutions. The resulting exhibition shows that little has changed since their 1986 campaign “It’s Even Worse in Europe.”

Hyperallergic reflects on Kara Walker’s “tumultuous charcoal drawings” featured in a recent exhibition at the Cleveland Museum of Art.

—Emily Haight is the digital editorial assistant at the National Museum of Women in the Arts.

Art Fix Friday: July 22, 2016

Eighteen women artists share advice for young artists in an article for artnet.

Ebony G. Patterson says, “Being an artist is not a sprint, it’s a marathon” while Marilyn Minter encourages young women artists to “Go with your gut, even if it goes against all rational thinking.” Mariko Mori imparts, “Never compare your career with other artists.”

Front-Page Femmes

Mexican artist Teresa Margolles builds a concrete shelter in Echo Park incorporating debris from homicide scenes as a monument to 100 forgotten victims.

The Washington Post interviews Iranian artist Atena Farghadani, who was released from prison two months ago.

Greek artist Despina Stokou writes an article about navigating art-world sexism.

Hyperallergic reviews The Woman Destroyed, featuring works related to femininity and the deconstruction of the female body within art history.

MoMA acquired Faith Ringgold’s American People Series #20: Die, which was on view at NMWA in 2013.

Slovakian artist Mária Švarbová stages eerie photographs of pastel-colored swimming pools.

Niki de Saint Phalle’s previously unseen works are on view in London.

Activist and comic Joyce Brabner says, “Any work a woman does has value.”

Louise Hearman won the 2016 Archibald prize.

Amy Cutler collaborated with a musician and a stylist for an interactive installation involving 800 feet of braided hair.

Juxtapoz highlights Rachel Kneebone’s fractured porcelain figures.

Google commissioned two women artists to create a mural using spreadsheets.

Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama illustrated The Little Mermaid.

Dorothea Tanning’s 1969 soft-sculpture “suggests a domestic world where desire finds odd outlets and fetishes take hold.”

Seattle-based artist Kate Alarcón transforms paper materials into flowers.

Women writers like H. M. Ward find success by self-publishing their work online.

More than 150 literary figures call for the release of imprisoned Palestinian poet Dareen Tatour.

Cyntha Ozick discusses reading as a child and how to create good villains.

Filmmaker Rebecca Miller discusses her fifth feature film, Maggie’s Plan.

Ava DuVernay’s new documentary explores the U.S.’s sky-high incarceration rate.

Screenwriter Melissa Mathison, best known for E.T., passed away before the completion of The BFG.

Six hundred pieces of music left behind by Jane Austen’s family are now available online.

The all-female Ghostbusters movie earned $46 million in its opening weekend.

Shows We Want to See

Alma Thomas at the Studio Museum in Harlem features works from every period of the artist’s career—including a work on loan from NMWA. ARTnews shares review excerpts from their archives about Thomas’s colorful abstractions.

Hyperallergic reviews Generations: Joyce J. Scott | Sonya Clark and writes that Scott “challenges art world taboos against beauty and humor.”

Whitechapel Gallery will host the first U.K. exhibition of the Guerrilla Girls—or “feminist masked avengers”—titled Is It Even Worse in Europe?

—Emily Haight is the digital editorial assistant at the National Museum of Women in the Arts.

Art Fix Friday: January 22, 2016

After Saatchi Gallery’s Champagne Life exhibition announcement, the Guardian expresses mixed-feelings and Broadly writes that “all-female group shows may have to be a necessity until equilibrium has been achieved.” In an interview with ArtinfoSaatchi Gallery Director and Chief Executive Nigel Hurst said, “the majority of women artists do have to keep more plates spinning.”

Front-Page Femmes

Marina Abramović trains a group of Greek performance artists for a large-scale performance project at the Benaki Museum in Athens.

In tragic news, 33-year-old French-Moroccan photographer and video artist Leila Alaoui died from injuries sustained during a terrorist attack in Burkina Faso. Best known for her portraits of Moroccans and migrants, Alaoui sought “to give life to the forgotten.”

The Atlantic delves into scientific illustrations by 17th-century naturalist artist Maria Sibylla Merian and writes, “One hundred and fifty years before Charles Darwin wrote his Origin of Species, Merian knew nature well enough to depict it as a constant struggle for survival.”

The Red Sand Project asks participants to fill cracks in local sidewalks with red sand as a metaphor for the millions of trafficked people who “fall through the cracks.”

A new Google Doodle celebrates Swiss Dada artist Sophie Taeuber-Arp and her “joyous abstractions.”

The Guerrilla Girls challenge the art-world status quo in Minnesota with a series of “takeover” events.

Works by Mickalene Thomas, on view at Aperture Gallery, explore Thomas’s various approaches to art making and background in photography.

The San Francisco Chronicle explores Black Salt, a women’s artist collective that sheds light on artists of color, queer artists, and other artists who are “on the periphery of museum culture.”

Abeer Bajandouh, a 27-year-old Saudi freelance photographer and educator, explores themes of identity and immigration.

Bonhams addresses gender imbalance in the art world by dedicating a section of its upcoming sale to a selection of women artists.

Vogue creative director Grace Coddington scales back her role after more than 25 years at the magazine.

The New York Times reviews Golden Globe-winning comedian Rachel Bloom’s series.

In a discussion about women choreographers, the Guardian describes “a gender imbalance so egregious, and of such long standing, that it shames the British dance establishment.”

Chicken & Egg, an organization dedicated to supporting female documentarians, announces Kristi Jacobson, Julia Reichert, Yoruba Richen, Elaine McMillion, and Michèle Stephenson as its five grant award recipients.

Colossal shares behind-the-scenes work of three women animators.

Shows We Want to See

Hyperallergic explores stand-out artwork in No Man’s Land and also discusses the challenges in presenting work by 100 women artists.

An exhibition in Berlin presents new paintings and works on paper by 81-year-old British artist Rose Wylie.

WOMEN: New Portraits features newly commissioned photography by Annie Leibovitz as a continuation of a project that began over 15 years ago.

—Emily Haight is the digital editorial assistant at the National Museum of Women in the Arts.

Art Fix Friday: October 30, 2015

Halloween Headlines 

Los Angeles–based artist and photographer Christine McConnell transformed her parents’ house into a spooky setting inspired by the 2006 animated feature Monster House.

NPR interviews author Stacey Schiff and reviews The Witches: Salem, 1692, as “engagingly thorough, thrillingly told, and bracingly authoritative.”

Next month, Louise Bourgeois’s Spider (1997) goes to auction with a low estimate of $25 million and a high estimate of $35 million. It might surpass the record holder, Georgia O’Keeffe’s Jimson Weed/White Flower No. 1, which sold last year for $44.4 million.

NPR asks writer Veronique Tadjo and Harvard professor Maria Tatar why old women are often evil in fairy tales and folklore.

Front-Page Femmes

Nigerian-born artist Njideka Akunyili Crosby wins the $50,000 Wein Prize from the Studio Museum in Harlem.

An 1843 sketch of Charlotte Brontë is revealed to be a self-portrait.

The Huffington Post explores how some prominent women artists, including Helen Frankenthaler, did not like to be labeled as such.

Pioneering Korean painter Chun Kyung-ja—best known for her vivid paintings of women and flowers—died at the age of 91.

Cleaners in an Italian museum threw away an avant-garde art installation by Sara Goldschmied and Eleonara Chiari—believing it was garbage.

The Guerrilla Girls launch a line of towels, hankies, and mugs for sale at MoMA.

Iranian-born journalist Khazar Fatemi’s short video series captures the stories of women in Afghanistan, Turkey, Syria, and Iraq.

Musician and actor Carrie Brownstein’s memoir, Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girldiscusses her upbringing, the break-up of her band, and her personal “battle waged on the body.”

Pulitzer prize-winning author Alice Walker refused a request to publish an Israeli edition The Color Purple because she believes the country “is guilty of apartheid and persecution of the Palestinian people.”

Vogue releases a clip of the new documentary focused on Dr. Maya Angelou.

One of only two female directors currently at Disney Television Animation, Aliki Theofilopoulos talks about perseverance in the animation industry.

Shows We Want to See

The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden showcases chapters one through three of Shana Lutker’s Le “NEW” Monocle. Influenced by surrealists’ fistfights, Lutker’s work is divided into eight parts, each featuring a piece of writing, a group of sculptures, and a performance.

The World Chess Hall hosts Ladies’ Knight: The Female Perspective on Chess, featuring 12 women’s works, which range from a standard chess-board to large video installations.

After a near-fatal car accident, multimedia artist Howardena Pindell focused on recapturing her past—as seen in her abstracted “Autobiography” series on view at Spelman College Museum of Fine Art.

—Emily Haight is the digital editorial assistant at the National Museum of Women in the Arts.

Art Fix Friday: September 25, 2015

The 2015 Emmy Awards were the most inclusive yet for women. Bustle notes, “Although Hollywood has never been the best when it comes to the representation of women, recent years have marked some real change.”

  • Fifteen of the 18 Leading Actress nominees in comedy, drama, and mini-series were women over the age of 35.
  • Allison Janney won her seventh Emmy, tying her for most performance Emmy wins.
  • Amy Schumer won for Outstanding Variety Sketch Series.
  • Red carpet interviewers #AskHerMore, focusing on women’s careers over looks.
  • Viola Davis became the first black woman to win for Best Actress in the drama category.

Front-Page Femmes

Hyperallergic investigates Jackie Saccoccio’s massive paintings “dominated by drips and spatters and networks of bleeding color.”

“It’s the language of Pop telling another story: the story of politics, feminism,” says the Tate Modern’s director about The World Goes Pop.

The Walker Art Center shares 11 Guerrilla Girls posters.

The Huffington Post shares a comedic cartoon featuring Frida Kahlo.

ARTINFO continues to share its list of the 25 most collectible midcareer artists with sonic and visual artist Jennie C. Jones.

The Gallery Weekend Budapest festival of Hungarian contemporary art mostly featured work by women artists.

Hyperallergic reviews a new book and exhibition based around Mary Ellen Mark’s documentary photographs. Mark’s photos “tell a larger story about individuals facing adversity in its myriad forms—poverty, natural disaster, family dysfunction, disability, and so on.”

A Los Angeles art gallery for women, trans, and queer artists, Heart of Art Gallery, was forced to shut down due to harassment and threats.

Self-taught artist Noell Osvald creates bold works through simple gestures performed in black and white.

Brands are selecting more female athletes for endorsement deals.

Artistic directors for ballet troupes are mostly men.

Feminist punk band Hemlines released its first official EP, All Your Homes, today.

Gaia Vince won the Royal Society Winton Prize for Science Books in 2015—as the first woman to win the prize in its 28-year history. The Guardian discusses why women don’t win science book prizes.

The New Yorker explores the work of crime writer Vera Caspary.

Shows We Want to See

“Countless female artists have been ignored, forgotten, and stepped on.” Hyperallergic announces that the Denver Art Museum (DAM) will host an exhibition of works by 12 women Abstract Expressionists opening in June 2016.

SculptureCenter in Long Island City features projects exclusively by women artists in 2016—an unintentional effect of the museum’s goal to “show work that has merit and doesn’t have enough attention, and that happens to be more true for women than men because they don’t get a lot of visibility in the art world.”

A new retrospective of Yayoi Kusama’s six-decade-long career includes early works that have never been exhibited.

—Emily Haight is the digital editorial assistant at the National Museum of Women in the Arts.

Art Fix Friday: August 7, 2015

“To me, they are art world royalty,” said a Whitney Museum curator about the famous feminist art collective.

The Guerrilla Girls posted a video of themselves celebrating their 30th year. Several members, including those with the pseudonyms “Frida Kahlo” and “Käthe Kollwitz,” talk to The New York Times about the continuing gender inequities in the art world.

The New York Times charts the Guerrilla Girls’ evolution. After three decades, their mission for equality is far from over. The group first collaborated in 1985 in response to a MoMA exhibition featuring 165 artists—less than ten percent of whom were women.

Joyce Kozloff recaps her meeting with Georgia O’Keeffe in the artist’s home in 1972.

Artnews visits sculptor Ursula von Rydingsvard in her Brooklyn studio.

Hyperallergic finds only five public statues of historical women in New York City.

In honor of the Tate Modern retrospective of Agnes Martin, Artnews posts a throwback article about the artist’s minimalist grid paintings.

A new anti-street harassment mural is unveiled outside a Brooklyn grocery store.

The New Yorker article “A Ghost in the Family” shares how artists Clare Rojas and Barry McGee formed a family around McGee’s daughter by his first wife, artist Margaret Kilgallen, after Kilgallen’s tragic death.

Artist Maxine Helfman’s “Historical Correction” series re-creates old Flemish portraits by replacing the posed subjects with men and women of color.

A new study says women make up 60% of museum staffs, but minorities only account for 28% of positions.

“Word to The Woman”—Solange Knowles’s newest collaboration with Puma—features 14 innovative women from different backgrounds.

Artnet celebrates artist Hedda Sterne’s birthday with six of her most famous quotes.

The Independent analyzes the role and prevalence of female comics in Hollywood.

Here She Comes Now: Women in Music Who Have Changed Our Lives features essays by 22 writers, most of them women.

The Guardian reviews five female-friendly comic book film adaptations.

Covered in Ink surveys numerous ways women in [tattoo] culture are marginalized.”

The Guardian posts an obituary for film noir star Coleen Gray.

Shows We Want to See

Curators Day + Gluckman features 24 women artists that provide “a snapshot of the evolving conversations that continue to contribute to the mapping of a women’s place in British society.”

One of the newest contemporary art galleries in Los Angeles exhibits works by eight women artists.

Swedish artist Hannah Liden’s bagel sculptures are installed at three New York locations.

—Emily Haight is the digital editorial assistant at the National Museum of Women in the Arts.

Art Herstory

Discrimination in the art world is not a new topic, and since the second wave of feminism, more focus has been placed on discrimination against women artists. (The second wave of feminism is usually associated with the 1960s–70s push for equal rights, addressing a variety of issues that included reproductive rights, equal pay, and the Equal Rights Amendment. The first wave of feminism is usually associated with the suffrage movement and property rights.) In the late 1980s, the Guerrilla Girls, an anonymous group of artists and activists, began tackling the issue of the lack of women in galleries and museums. As the years went on they expanded their mission to include artists of color.

NMWA visitors viewing The Guerrilla Girls Talk Back

NMWA visitors viewing The Guerrilla Girls Talk Back

By 1995, the Guerrilla Girls saw that women artists were getting some recognition in galleries and museums. However, the Girls believed that this new spotlight was often motivated by tokenism, instead of a genuine effort toward equality or recognizing unseen artists. As the idea of multiculturalism became part of mainstream thinking, museums and galleries adopted tokenism. Tokenism is any policy that only minimally complies with rules, laws, or public pressure; for example, allowing one woman to join a men’s organization. Usually the token member of a group does not have an equal vote, say, or the same presence as the other members, they are there mainly for the purpose of showing that the group is including minorities.

Image of Top ten ways to tell if you're an art world token, 1995.

Guerrilla Girls, Top ten ways to tell if you’re an art world token, 1995. Photolithograph on paper, 17 x 22 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts; Gift of Steven Scott, Baltimore, in honor of Wilhelmina Cole Holladay; © Guerrilla Girls.

The Guerrilla Girls approached this new tokenism in the art world with their classic sense of humor. The Girls’s poster Top Ten Signs You’re an Art World Token lists just some of the ways for people to identify whether or not they are indeed tokens. These items range from the timing of shows (galleries showing women artists only during women’s history month, for example) to the way people treat you (as in always telling you their interracial and gay sexual fantasies). The poster also addresses the idea that token artists speak for their entire gender, race, or sexual orientation, something that we would never ask of a white, straight, male artist.

To see Top Ten Signs You’re an Art World Token: poster and more than 70 other protest pieces by the Guerrilla Girls, visit The Guerrilla Girls Talk Back on the second floor of the National Museum of Women in the Arts, on view through October 2.

—Sarah Reck is a development intern at the National Museum of Women in the Arts.