Art Fix Friday: July 1, 2016

ARTnews highlights Women of Abstract Expressionism at the Denver Art Museum. The exhibition features 52 paintings by 12 artists, including a painting by Judith Godwin on loan from the National Museum of Women in the Arts.

Artsy features a list of 11 female Abstract Expressionists from Joan Mitchell to Alma Thomas. The Huffington Post explores the long-held belief that “the painters experimenting with spontaneous, automatic or subconscious creativity were almost exclusively (white) male.”

Front-Page Femmes

Allison Knowles, an 83-year-old Fluxus artist best known for Make a Salad, thinks about how people relate to commonplace objects.

The New Yorker explores Nan Goldin’s career and “The Ballad of Sexual Dependency,” a collection of 127 photographs.

Lithuanian artist Severija Inčirauskaitė-Kriaunevičienė uses cross-stitch embroidery on antique soldiers’ helmets.

Toronto-based illustrator Ness Lee creates “joyously risqué” work.

Alejandra Atarés paints portraits where her subjects’ backs are turned, using the background to reference aspects of her sitters’ lives.

Mixed-media artist and activist Saba Taj explores American Muslim identity and Islamophobia.

Karin Mamma Andersson explores historical conventions for shaping the female mind and body.

Mawuena Kattah created a 48-piece tiled frieze with the help of the Victoria and Albert Museum’s ceramics studio and the charity Intoart.

Clara Drummond won the prestigious BP portrait award for her painting of fellow artist Kirsty Buchanan.

Milo Moiré was arrested in London for her “Mirror Box” performances.

Emma Sulkowicz, recipient of NOW’s 2016 Woman of Courage award, carried a mattress around campus in protest of how the school handled her rape allegations.

artnet explores how Martha Rosler’s “postcard novels” from the 1970s are still relevant today.

Korean artist Sui Park creates sea creatures from interlocked cable ties.

After working undercover as a teacher in North Korea, Suki Kim’s investigative work was miscategorized as a memoir.

The New York Times writes, “Breaking the Glass Slipper: Where Are the Female Choreographers?

Broadway singer Barbara Cook talks to NPR about her career and new memoir.

Sharon Signs To Cherry Red contains 45 songs showcases indie rock musicians who sang about motherhood, babies, and love.

Icelander Una Lorenzen’s documentary, Yarn, explores how the traditional art form is undervalued.

The Innocents follows a French Red Cross doctor summoned to a convent to care for pregnant nuns.

Gone With the Wind actress Olivia de Havilland celebrates her 100th birthday.

Director Hannah Hauer-King discusses being a gay woman working in theatre and the need for greater representation.

Shows We Want to See

The Guardian explores exhibitions of Georgia O'Keeffe (left) and Simone Leigh (right)

The Guardian explores exhibitions of Georgia O’Keeffe (left) and Simone Leigh (right)

In anticipation of Tate Modern’s Georgia O’Keeffe retrospective, the Guardian examines how the artist shaped feminine style. In another article delving into O’Keeffe’s career, the Guardian says, “forget the morning glories and orificial irises,” focusing instead on the artist’s “far more humble” representations of a farmstead.

Simone Leigh’s The Waiting Room at the New Museum presents an alternative vision of the U.S. healthcare system.

Istanbul Modern hosts Who’s inside you?, İnci Eviner’s retrospective consisting of paintings, drawings, videos, sculptures, and photography.

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

Righting the Balance: It Doesn’t Stop Here

NMWA’s latest initiative, Women, Arts, and Social Change, kicked off Sunday, October 18, with FRESH TALK: Righting the Balance. The new public program focuses on women and the arts as catalysts for change through a series of “Fresh Talks.”


FRESH TALK panelists, Left: Maura Reilly, Sarah Douglas, and Jillian Steinhauer, Right: Guerrilla Girl Alma Thomas, Micol Hebron, Ghada Amer, and Simone Leigh; Photo: Kevin Allen

Women at the top of their art-world careers addressed the topic, “Can there be gender parity in the art world?” Curator and event co-organizer Maura Reilly, who wrote the central essay in the recent ARTnews magazine on women in the art world, introduced the event. Discussions featured Jillian Steinhauer of Hyperallergic, Sarah Douglas of ARTnews, Gabriela Palmieri of Sotheby’s, Mary Sabbatino of Galerie Lelong, artist Ghada Amer, artist Micol Hebron (organizer of Gallery Tally), artist Simone Leigh, Guerrilla Girl Alma Thomas, and activist/storyteller Jamia Wilson.

The goal of FRESH TALK is to keep the conversation going, and it wouldn’t be complete without input from participants, advocates, and women. We asked for your feedback during stimulating conversation over Sunday Supper and via comments. This is what you told us:

1. More women need to be heard.

Although the panel featured women from different backgrounds, talents, and career paths—Guerrilla Girl Alma Thomas was a highlight for many attendees—participants want to hear from more women of color and from the LGBT community. The next two FRESH TALK programs push these communities to the forefront of the discussion.

2. It’s time to get loud!

Artist Micol Hebron—one of the most-quoted speakers of the night—said, “If you don’t see something, say something!” When visitors notice a lack of representation of women, persons of color, and the LGBT community in museums, galleries, or other arts spaces, they should speak up! Collective voices can rally against these injustices.


FRESH TALK attendees share their thoughts during Sunday Supper and through comment cards; Photo: Kevin Allen

3. Arts inequities are a problem for women of all ages.

A vast intergenerational audience exchanged views over Sunday Supper. Emerging women advocates sat with experienced professionals and passionately shared ideas about advancing the conversation. Intergenerational advocacy can be a strong resource in combating inequality.

4. Nonprofit art centers can make a difference too.

FRESH TALK attendees; Photo: Kevin Allen

FRESH TALK attendees Sheena Marie Morrison and Lauren Lyde; Photo: Kevin Allen

Panelists focused on data concerning gender inequity in the arts—particularly in sales and auction prices of art by women.

Nonprofit and alternative art spaces work as resources contesting the status quo. Many institutions thrive under the leadership of women, especially in D.C. We look forward to hearing more about the challenges that local centers face through an upcoming Cultural Capital series.

5. Now is the time to strike!

Fueled with the knowledge of engaging panelists, the event’s participants were inspired to take action. One commenter wants to host a protest for women artists, while another hopes to encourage her university gallery to collect and display work by women. An educator plans to empower her students to continue to challenge inequity.

It doesn’t stop here. Stay tuned for more FRESH TALK programs and get involved in the fight for gender equity in the arts. Mark your calendars for “Carrie Mae Weems: Can an artist inspire social change?” on November 15 and “Change by Design with Gabriel Maher and Alice Rawsthorn—Can design be genderless?” on January 27, 2016.

—Kayleigh Bryant-Greenwell is the public programs coordinator at the National Museum of Women in the Arts