A Closer Look at The Feminist Art Movement

Four You Gallery
August 20, 2021

A woman painting outdoors Many established and emerging female artists have made a name for themselves in the world of art, but this wasn’t always the case. Not that long ago, art used to be completely dominated by men just like countless other fields. Men were artists, painters, and sculptors—as well as the scholars and critics who set the standards for art. That changed with the rise of the feminist art movement, which is discussed below:

Origins of The Feminist Art Movement

The feminist art movement developed in the late 1960s, in the middle of tremendous socio-cultural and political change. The decade saw civil rights movements, protests against the Vietnam War, political assassinations, and countless people standing up for what they believed to be right. The environment—focused on change and bringing about a new way of doing things—proved useful to the movement. Before it began, women in art were limited to being subjects only. Female artists, no matter how talented or skilled, were regularly kept out of exhibitions and not offered representation by galleries. The feminist art movement sought to highlight women’s perspectives in art and encourage the viewer to question the unfairness being faced by them.

Facts About the Feminist Art Movement

Here are some interesting facts about the feminist art movement:
  • Feminist artists wanted a fresh start, which is why they chose to work with media typically ignored by men. Textiles, performance art, and digital media quickly gained popularity in the movement.
  • Judy Chicago and Miriam Schapiro founded the very first feminist art program at the California Institute of the Arts in 1971. The duo also went on to found Womanhouse.
  • Some Living Women Artists/Last Supper’by Mary Beth Edelson is hailed as one of the earliest, most powerful works of feminist art. Using Da Vinci’s ‘Last Supper’ as inspiration, the 1972 collage replaced the faces of Jesus Christ and his apostles with those of female artists.
  • The 1974 installation artwork Dinner Party by Judy Chicagocelebrated women. 39 influential women got pride of place in the installation work, and they were accompanied by 999 more names. It’s currently located at The Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art, and names are added to the exhibition even today.

Notable Feminist Artists

  • Barbara Kruger
  • Miriam Schapiro
  • Guerrilla Girls
  • Sarah Lucas
  • Louise Bourgeois

Feminist Artists in Contemporary Art

  • Olivera Parlic
  • Kirsten Lilford
  • Joe Hesketh
  • Mikela Henry-Lowe
  • Alexandra Gallagher
An artist standing near her easels As a contemporary art gallery, Four You is designed to celebrate female artists. We hold online exhibitions by female artists, and are proud to be one of the best art galleries for emerging artists. Check out our contemporary art for sale online, and contact us to learn more.

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