Panorama view of exhibition in Jedlitschka Gallery, Zurich.

Panorama view of exhibition in Jedlitschka Gallery, Zurich.

07 November 2016

Dr Great Art Podcast Episode 1: "Illegal to Teach Women Art"


Dr Great Art, the Podcast is up and running! You can get it at http://drgreatart.libsyn.com/rss or http://drgreatart.libsyn.com/
or on iTunes podcast app store,

https://itunes.apple.com/ch/podcast/dr-great-art!-short-fun-art/id1167011656?l=en
all for free!
The first episode is "Illegal to Teach Women Art." There were of course female artist at all times. Most simply have been ignored, or even later removed from mainstream art history. Worst of all, for most of history in the West and the East, it was illegal to instruct or train women to become professional artists at all! Come listen to short (5 min.) fun and educational art history artecdotes by Mark Staff Brandl.


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Her is the script (NOT a transcript, as I change elements when recording.)
Dr Great Art Podcast One
"Illegal to Teach Women Art"
Hi this is Mark Staff Brandl, with the first "Dr (Great) Art" brief podcast. I hope you enjoy it and come back for each and every one.
Today we have a short Artecdote. Titled "It was Illegal to Teach Women Art"
There were of course female artist at all times. Most simply have been ignored, or even later removed from mainstream art history. More and more of their stories are being unveiled and recounted.
It was, nevertheless immensely difficult for a female artist until, and I would suggest even including, contemporary times. (Look at the justified criticisms of the artworld from the Guerrilla Girls.) Worst of all, for most of history in the West and the East, it was illegal to instruct or train women to become professional artists. Most women got little schooling at all. Yes, daughters of rich or powerful people could be trained in a little gentile flower-painting or the like, but nothing serious --- nor especially professional --- was allowed.
And even IF women later than the Baroque were allowed to learn a wee bit about art, they were officially fenced-in as to WHAT they could learn --- it was not until the 19th century that female artists were permitted to study figure drawing from live subjects at all!
In short, it was ILLEGAL to teach women to become artists, from at least the Middle Ages through to the beginning of Modern times. It was a punishable offence!
In particular, in two of the greatest European art historical eras, the Renaissance and the Baroque, when Humanism and individualism were being born, it was largely not for women.
When, in 1550, Giorgio Vasari published the first edition of his Le vite de piĆ¹ eccellenti architetti, pittori, et scultori ... (Lives of the Most Excellent Architects, Painters, and Sculptors ... ), the first real art history text, he included only one woman. He later includes four, incl. sculptor Properzia de' Rossi. Perhaps most known at that time was Sofonisba Anguissola, who Michelangelo noted as being talented.
Women artists were still regarded then as "abnormal," even "monsters of nature." Second, most male artists came from the artisan, working class (as indeed in our time until about the mid 80s). Children of wealthy or aristocratic families did not learn to be artists, even the men,  because the manual aspects of art production were considered beneath their dignity. Classism and sexism make good partners it seems.
Sometimes it was possible to a small degree to learn art if a woman was in a convent, or some women learned how to paint from their rather "cool," law-defying fathers. Several notable female artists began their careers this way, including, Artemisia Gentileschi (about whom I will go into in a future podcast) and Marietta Robusti (called, La Tintoretta, Tintoretto’s daughter).

In recent years, under the influence of Feminism, art historians have been dedicated to finding the details of these talented women, finding their works and bringing them back into broad art historical knowledge. This is exciting and we must continue --- as well as continue fighting against sexism (and for that matter racism, classism and ageism) in the artworld today.

Thanks for listening. That was "Dr (Great) Art" podcast number 1. If you wish to hear more cool, exciting and hopefully inspiring stuff about art history and art, come back for more. Also I, Dr Mark Staff Brandl, artist and art historian, am available for live custom Performance-Lectures.
I take viewers inside visual art and art history. Entertainingly, yet educationally and aesthetically, I analyze, underline, and discuss the reasons why a work of art is remarkable, or I go through entire eras, or indeed through the entirety of art history. The lectures often take place with painted background screens and even in my painting-installations.
You can find or contact me at
www.drgreatart.com/
book me at www.mirjamhadorn.com
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