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“Making Space: Women Artists and Postwar Abstraction,” MoMA (2017). Can You See it From Here?

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“In 2017, The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) present[ed] a major exhibition surveying the abstract practices of women artists between the end of World War II (1939-1945) and the onset of [this] Feminist movement in the late 1960s.  ‘Making Space: Women Artists and Postwar Abstraction’ feature[d] approximately 100 works in a diverse range of mediums by more than 50 international artists … the exhibition s[howed] the stunning achievements of women artists during a pivotal period in art history.” (ArtNova.org). The exhibition was on  view from April 15 through August 13, 2017.

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“Women Artists and Postwar Abstraction,” MoMA (2017). Can You See it From Here?

In the interest of Fine Art in the New Media, we will explore what remains today for anyone, anywhere to see this exhibition. This is important because,

“In the decades after World War II, societal shifts made it possible for larger numbers of women than ever before to pursue careers as artists. Abstraction dominated artistic practice internationally between 1945 and the late 1960s, as many artists sought a formal language that might transcend national and regional narratives – and for women artists, additionally, those relating to gender. But despite new opportunities, women often found their work dismissed in the male-dominated art world.”

On the MoMA site you can still see  a video, that shows a large part of the exhibition with great commentary by one of its curators.

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The MoMA site originally featured 19 audio recordings. While the audios do not seem to be presently available on on the site, there art transcripts. Here is a segment from the interview with , Lee Krasner about her work, Gaea (1966).

“Starr Figura: This is Gaea by Lee Krasner, a monumental painting from 1966. Krasner was one of a number of women involved with the abstract expressionist movement from the ’40s all the way through the ’60s. And she was famously the wife of Jackson Pollock. Here’s Lee Krasner:

“Lee Krasner: I think my initial contact with the canvas—because some gesture occurs—some sweep across the canvas before I take off, so to speak. And in that initial contact may be a suggestion which dictates then—color.”

The MoMA site has a Master List of the works, (excerpt below),

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and also retains 26 images hi-res images from the exhibition. Click here for a spectacular view of these images.


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Where to From Here, “Women Artists” or “Artists?”

As written by Abigail Cain, “MoMA Show Unearths Female Abstractionists That Have Languished in Storage,”

“In 2010 … the museum published Modern Women: Women Artists at The Museum of Modern Art. The book, which documents the history of women at MoMA, alerted readers to the fact that only 102 of the 2,052 exhibitions held at MoMA since 1929 focused specifically on women artists—95 solo shows and seven group shows.”

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