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Women Who Painted

I had wanted a phone with a stylus for some time to explore digital painting. Needing an upgrade, I purchased one in late 2016. Although the screen is small (4 x 2 3/4") the immediacy it offers is appealing. I became absorbed in the process, set myself the task of drawing one female painter each month, and added more if time allowed. I began researching deceased artists to paint and began learning about painters I had never heard of. I thought of these small works as thumbnail sketches to work out ideas and become familiar with a face that would eventually be painted on canvas. As this series has grown in number, it has taken on a life of its own and become a focus concurrent with my other work.

 

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Having painted for years, I have had the time and distance to reflect on my role as a painter in a larger framework and my appreciation for historical women painters has deepened. I feel a connection to them simply by having chosen the same profession, with all of its inherent struggles and rewards. Paying homage to women who paved the way is a way of honoring and increasing awareness of them. The National Museum of Women in the Arts has some facts pertaining to the representation of women in the arts, but to me, one of the most astonishing is that out of 318 artists represented in H.W. Jansen's Basic History of Western Art, only 27 women are mentioned in the 9th edition. This work is a way of rewriting history and underscoring these deserving artists’ contributions to the art world.

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