An accompanying blog to the twitter account .


The Roman writer Pliny the Elder (23 – 79 AD) noted the first ever artist as being a woman called Dibutades…This, it seems, was enough for Western art history to shut down on the subject of women artists for the next 2000 years …. Until, that is, feminist art historians, in the late 20th century, began to unmask a history of systematic female artistic suppression and exclusion….

In turn, despite an ongoing restrictive cultural landscape, of the women artists who have received some form of recognition, many share the status of being pioneers, employing extremely clever enabling strategies in order to create.

In terms of women of colour and women working outside of the dominating Western art framework in many diverse cultures, there are often still many gendered barriers to overcome. However, this may be in addition to the impact of racism, imperialist ideals and bias, colonialism and so on.

As both feminism and post-colonial analysis highlights, those with the power define the terms….

These terms vary from an outright history of exclusion from the systems of the art world to more subtle definitions of what art and the artist actually is and the values we place on particular creativity. Conditions also relate to how gendered perceptions are created through male/female representation for example.

The art women create, therefore, is produced under particular (and evolving) gendered cultural circumstances and expectations.

Art can not help but encompass some aspect of perspective, whether asserting an existence beyond an imposed constructed identity, or reflecting the boundaries of your reality, or imparting shared experience and knowledge …

I would argue that despite the diversity in both artists and practices, there is a definite thread of shared female experience running through much of the art women create ….

…often one of strength against diversity, of stamina and persistence, of survival in the art world and hence a very positive reason to celebrate female creativity ….

This blog is to explore the art women make by looking at art history, at individual artists/artworks, at female representation and many other aspects which may come under the heading #womensart….

Hope you enjoy it.


(Kunie Sugiura, After “Electric Dress”, 2001)