!Women Art Revolution sheds light on feminist art movement
In the late 1960s, female artists became aware of the unequal representation and exclusion of their work in museum exhibitions, art journals, and educational literature.
Between 1961 and 1971, only 4% of works displayed in group shows at The Los Angeles County Museum were created by women. This underrepresentation was common throughout America, which caused many female artists to submit their work anonymously in order to avoid discrimination. In addition, women artists were discouraged from exploring gender and identity in their work.
In an effort to transform the art industry, female artists joined together to form Women Artists in Revolution (WAR), an instrumental group in the Feminist Art Movement, which aimed to change the representation gap and female censorship in art. Individuals who had a high influence in the feminist art movement include: Barbara Kruger, Cindy Sherman, and the Guerrilla Girls.
Lynn Hershman Leeson, an active participant in WAR., spent 42 years documenting the feminist art movement by collecting interviews and historical footage. In 2010 she released the groundbreaking documentary !Women Art Revolution, a film that exposes what many historians believe is the most significant art movement of the late-twentieth century.
Simmons Professor and Chair of the Department of Art & Music Colleen Kiely says the documentary's candid interviews help shed light on the barriers facing women in the art world.
"The history of feminist art directly informs contemporary art, culture and politics. This footage is simultaneously personal and historical and brings to life the movement's contradictions and complexities," says Professor Kiely.
Simmons is hosting a screening and panel discussion of !W.A.R. on Thursday November 3 at 6:30 p.m. For additional information and a complete list of panelists, visit the Facebook event page.