Articles with tag: canon

07/15/2022 _Perspective

Women Artists—Still Invisible Today?

A Critical Approach to Strategies of Making Women Artists Visible

1_Women Artists’ In_Visibility—The Omnipresence of a Rather Old Phenomenon When it comes to the representation of women artists either in art historical research, in the media, or in exhibitions, the viewer and reader cannot avoid observing the inflationary use of the terms visibility and invisibility. This fact is most certainly owed to the great and seemingly growing number of projects, especially exhibitions, which are specifically dedicated to women artists, and which consider themselves to be contributing to raising awareness thereof. In 2019, for example, the National Gallery in Berlin organized the exhibition Kampf um Sichtbarkeit. Künstlerinnen der Nationalgalerie vor 1919 (English title: Fighting for Visibility: Women Artists in the Nationalgalerie before 1919), which represented “the first extensive study dedicated to all the works in the Nationalgalerie produced by women painters and sculptors before 1919.” [1] Moreover, a special issue of the French cultural magazine Télérama, published in 2021 and entitled Femmes artistes–ni vues ni connues (Women Artists—Neither Visible nor Known), presented more than 20 international women artists from the 16th century until today. The issue featured their short biographies and discussed their professional situation and in_visibility in numerous essays, informing the reader about current exhibitions focusing on women artists, like Elle font l’abstraction (Centre Pompidou, Paris, English title: Women in Abstraction), Peintres femmes 1780–1830: Naissance d’un combat (Musée du Luxembourg, Paris, English title: Women Painters, 1780–1830: The Birth of a Battle), and She-Bam Pow Pop Wizz! Les Amazones du pop (MAMAC, Nice, English title: She-Bam Pow POP Wizz! The Amazons of Pop). [2] In 2021, Karl der Grosse—Das Debattierhaus, an institution in Zurich that organizes debates on current political and social issues, held a panel about Die Unsichtbarkeit der Künstlerinnen—Ein Podium zur Unterrepräsentation der Frauen in der Kunstwelt (The Invisibility of Women Artists—A Panel on the Under-Representation of Women in the Art World). [3] These examples—drawn from exhibitions, magazines, and panels in Germany, France, and Switzerland—are only a few amongst numerous others that illustrate the recent international presence of the topic in public debate. However, the question of in_visibility of women artists is not a recent one but a central issue in feminist art history since its formation in the 1970s. In the following discussion, I will contextualize the question of women artists’ in_visibility within the discourse of art history and analyze some of the problems in the process of making women artists visible today. It becomes apparent that this…