Saturday, June 1, 2013

40. Art Square: Women in a Box

Art Square 
By Becky Brown
   Janson---it made a better purse than an art history textbook

Back when I was in art school in the 1960s the standard art history text was Janson, a gray behemoth. Among my professors was Dr. Marilyn Stokstad, who did not point out that this survey of art with its 3,000 images mentioned absolutely NO women artists. 

Marilyn Stokstad (1929-2016)

She must have noticed, however, as she wrote her own textbook in 1995.

A better textbook

When Eleanor Dickinson asked author Horst W. Janson about the lack of women in his survey of centuries of art he said they were unimportant. The men in the book represented "achievements of the imagination...that have one way or another changed the history of art..."
“I have not been able to find a woman artist who clearly belongs in a one-volume history of art.”
Self Portrait
Gabriele Münter 1877-1962

The Catch is, of course, if you never see an artist's work she cannot change anything.

 One artist who has been changing my view of how to paint lately is German Gabriele Münter.

Do a web search for her name. But ignore the text that she's important only because she had an affair with Kandinsky.

The right to be taken seriously as an artist: We still have a long way to go.

Art Square 
By Becky Brown

This week's block Art Square is a pattern from the Ladies' Art Company, the source of many clever names for patchwork patterns. Notice the name of this needlework company, which began selling embroidery and patchwork designs in the late 1880s. Münter received her education at the "Damen-Kunstschule" in Düsseldorf, the Ladies' Art School.

 Ladies' Art...the concept fits into a nice box, which the center of this pattern can recall.

BlockBase #2403

Cutting Instructions
8" first, 12" in parentheses

A - Cut 4 squares 2-1/2". (3-1/2")

B - Cut 4 squares  2-7/8".(3-7/8")
Cut each in half diagonally to make 2 triangles. You need 8 triangles.

C - Cut 1 square 6-1/8". (9")

Becky says: For the 8" "I would suggest cutting C as 6-3/16" (or a fat 6-1/8") a little bit can make a big difference in such a large piece." Maybe you should cut that 9" square 9-1/4" and then decide if you need to trim it.

Art Square 
By Georgann Eglinski

Art Square 
By Dustin Cecil
Dustin is doing his block in low contrast shades grouped by color.
He's going to arrange the colors in a medallion.
He's using a lot of dots.
He called my attention to artist Yayoi Kusama.

Yayoi Kusama might have changed the history of art in 1967 if this piece done that year had received attention.

Do a web search for her work and ignore the text about her affair with Donald Judd. It's unimportant.


  1. Thanks Barbara! In England today its Derby Day at Epsom where Emily Davison lost her life 100 years ago on June 4th.. She is to be remembered at the event today to mark the centenary of her death There has been an interesting documentary investigating her death too. Here are the links for more information! Happy Stitching Saturday!

  2. *%$#@ Janson, I swear. By the late 80s I think Artemisia Gentileschi might have been in there, but don't quote me on it. But yeah, you'd get the impression that no woman in the history of the world has ever picked up a paintbrush (never mind made good art) and all we're really good for, art-wise, is being someone's 'muse'.