The David Owsley University Museum of Art offers visitors a mostly unexplored view of printmaking by women artists in
Moses set adrift on the Nile, Claudine Bouzonnet-Stella, 1672, Engraving, Purchase: Museum of Art Endowment
Women in Print: Female Printmakers 1500-1800, an exhibition drawn from the collection of the Allentown (Pennsylvania) Art Museum. Until modern times, women engravers often worked as silent partners, helping as needed in the family business but leaving little evidence of their contributions. A few women did and they are represented in the exhibition. The etchings and engravings represent six countries and span three centuries, from the Italian Renaissance through the French Revolution to the Romantic Era at the end of the Napoleonic Empire. The subjects encompass a variety of categories, including religion, history, portraiture, landscape, still life, animals, and scenes of daily life. The show is a celebration of women artists in a time when there was so much working against them. “The whole notion of gender bias—critically, commercially, and in every other sense—is very real in the art world,” says director, Peter Blume, “and while post-World War II we have a good representation of women artists, before that time their work is rare. This collection offers evidence that women were working as designers, engravers, and publishers of their own work, and doing it as well as the men.”
Impressions from the Feminine Perspective: Women Printmakers from Three Centuries An essay on the subject of female printmakers in regard to the Women In Print exhibition by Star Siegele, who played an integral role in assembling the collection of prints by women artists at the Allentown Art Museum.
Exhibition Date: February 29, 2008 - May 11, 2008
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