Many women artists have been ignored but, while the world was looking away, they went on creating their art. There is a change in attitude lately, to pay attention to some of these women and give recognition to their work. They are being discovered or re-discovered now when they are in their elder years. There is such a diversity of styles and the materials they use. Their creative spark has not diminished.
I want to write about some of the women artists who I have become of aware of through a blog I subscribe to here in LA. It is the Engage blog which often posts about elder artists and provides links to articles.
Here is a group of artists from a New York Times T Magazine article called Works in Progress which, quote, is ” a very small sampling of the female artists now in their 70s, 80s and 90s we should have known about decades ago.” This piece includes some videos, of two of the artists, Judith Bernstein and Rosalyn Drexler.
I have done a post on Carmen Herrera in the past which includes some nice videos of her work, including an interview of her, and more discussion of overlooked women artists through a link to a Hyperallergic essay. Carmen Herrera just had a retrospective show. She recently turned 100. The videos I found on some of the artists adds a depth over viewing 2-dimensional images. In many videos the artist is interviewed and able to speak for their own perspective and the videos include some art that is not available freely online.
Dorothea Rockburne via Netropolitan Artsconversations:
In the video below, the artist Joan Semmel speaks about how she wants her paintings of her older self to express that there should not be shame about being older for women or men. From the T Magazine post: Semmel,…………. is encouraged by the current interest in her — and other older female artists’ work — because, as she puts it, women “are usually buried after about 45 years of age and just disappear completely.” Moreover, she adds, she isn’t just getting older, she is getting better: “I really feel that some of my most powerful work has come in these late years.”
The continued work of these women artists says that creativity does not have an age limit or expiration date. In my research I found this article from The Guardian by Emine Saner. She interviewed a group of women artists who were over 60 years old. She writes, “I spoke to a number of well-established women artists, and found that age certainly does not seem to have had a detrimental effect on their creativity – indeed, for many, their later years have been among their most productive.”
These women artists embody the essence of creativity and the inextinguishable flame of the human spirit.