I’m taking an art history course about women. What could be better than that?? We’re discussing not only women artists and patrons throughout history, but also how women have been depicted in art throughout history. I’m sure I will have tons of fascinating information to share with you as I learn more about women in art, but today I want to share an experience from the first class I went to that really changed my outlook on what I would gain from this class.
I showed up to our Zoom class, beyond excited to go through the syllabus and discuss what themes we will be tackling throughout the semester. The classic name, major, and hometown information was shared, and an introduction by Dr. Irwin kicked off our class. We were broken up into breakout rooms to discuss what we individually wanted to discuss throughout the semester, and things like gender roles, sexuality, “feminine” styles of art, and much more were brought up. When we were called back to the general meeting, we were prompted to answer a question that stopped me dead in my tracks.
“Can anyone name a woman artist?”
I think collectively we named about 6.
Six!! A class full of primarily art students could only scrap together six names of women artists. This is when my wanting to learn in this class turned into a needing to learn. I could probably name over twenty male artists off the top of my head for you right now (and that’s without having any coffee yet). As an art history student, an artist, and a woman, this history is something that I thought I knew at least the basics of. Well, it turns out I really don’t know much. My whole major is art history, and I know next to nothing about my own demographic. I don’t just want to take this class because I like women and art, I need to take this class because I don’t know about women in art.
So don’t worry, I’ll be posting nearly everything I learn! I hope that you’ll find it interesting, too. Until then, have a great week!