The Great Women Artists

By Katy Hessel

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kaye
 Mar 22, 2022
Love this podcast! Great listening and learning experience.

Description

Created off the back of @thegreatwomenartists Instagram, this podcast is all about celebrating women artists. Presented by art historian and curator, Katy Hessel, this podcast interviews artists on their career, or curators, writers, or general art lovers, on the female artist who means the most to them.

Episode Date
Marina Abramović
00:52:59
In this very special BONUS EPISODE of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the most renowned artists alive today, Marina Abramović. *BOOK NEWS!* I have written a book! Order The Story of Art without Men here: https://www.waterstones.com/book/the-story-of-art-without-men/katy-hessel/9781529151145 **This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.com – use the code "The Artist is Present" at checkout for 15% off!** The “grandmother” of Performance Art, Marina Abramovic has been instrumental in pioneering the genre as a visual art form for the last five decades – a genre defined by risk taking; being present; a state of mind; emptying yourself; and connecting the energies with the surrounding public. Born in Belgrade, the capital of Yugoslavia in 1946, to communist hero parents, Marina Abramović experienced a strict upbringing. Until the age of 29, she was under a curfew of 10 o’clock – resulting in the artist running away a few months later. Since the beginning of her career in the 1970s, Marina Abramović has stretched the limits of the body and mind as both object and subject. Early works include Rhythm 0 (1974), where she became an object of experimentation for the audience – laying out 72 objects, including a pistol, and stating they could be used on her as desired; or Rhythm 5 (1974), where she lay in the centre of a burning five-point star. She has withstood pain, exhaustion, and danger in her quest for emotional and spiritual transformation. Never slowing down, in 1997 she won the Golden Lion at the Venice Biennale for a work that commented on war in Yugoslavia, and in 2010, she took over MoMA for The Artist is Present, where she sat motionless in a chair for eight hours a day – the show broke records, attracting 850,000 visitors. In 2012, she founded the Marina Abramović Institute (MAI), a non-profit foundation for performance art, and has since exhibited at the world’s most prestigious institutions, earning her a global following. And in 2023, she will be the first woman to have a solo exhibition in the main galleries of the Royal Academy of Arts, London. TODAY Marina Abramović launches The Hero 25FPS – @artistispresent / NFT.CIRCA.ART For her first performance launching today on the blockchain, Marina Abramović revisits one of her most personal and autobiographical works ‘The Hero (2001)’ to present in collaboration with The Cultural Institute of Radical Contemporary Art (CIRCA) this digital exploration of time, immateriality and audience participation. Filmed at 25 frames per second, never before seen footage has been separated into 6,500 unique frames to create The Hero 25FPS, a genesis NFT collection by the warrior of performance art. A call for today’s new heroes! Upon completion of THE HERO 25FPS, Marina Abramović, @nadyariot (Pussy Riot) and CIRCA will award a series of Hero Grants to people working within Web3 who demonstrate a desire to make the world a better place. ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Jul 24, 2022
Caroline Bourgeois on Marlene Dumas
00:41:02
In episode 88, and the SEASON FINALE of Season 7 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the esteemed curator, Caroline Bourgeois on MARLENE DUMAS! *BOOK NEWS!* I have written a book! Order The Story of Art without Men here: https://www.waterstones.com/book/the-story-of-art-without-men/katy-hessel/9781529151145 **This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.com | use the code TGWA20 at checkout for 20% off!•• A painter of the face, the figure and the human psyche and form, Marlene Dumas is one of the most influential painters alive today. Collecting raw emotion and translating it visually onto the canvas through paint, Dumas derives her work from second hand images. In turn, she creates internal portraits that trigger every sense in your body. Contradictory and complex, verging on the sublime and full of seduction, they are also enveloped in pain. Made without any prior studies, she holds a feeling, an emotion, movement and life in the second of the moment. Although her figures are still, it is like they are moving, and although they are immortalised, it is like they are breathing. I couldn't be more excited to say that she is the artist who we will be discussing today with Caroline Bourgeois, the curator of "Marlene Dumas: Open––End” at Palazzo Grassi in VENICE!! https://www.palazzograssi.it/en/exhibitions/current/open-end-marlene-dumas/ I was astonished going round this exhibition at Palazzo Grassi. I have seen a few works in the flesh by Dumas, but walking around, it was electrifying. Not only do these paintings pulsate with colour and exude sensuality, but they appear full of motion. Dumas captures this raw, internal human emotion that is at once full of strength but vulnerability. Not existing in any physical space, her works teeter on the threshold between life and death, internal and the external… It is like they are memories that are familiar, protective, but also ghoulish and haunting. LIST OF PAINTINGS DISCUSSED HERE: https://www.palazzograssi.it/site/assets/files/9808/guide_marlene-dumas_eng.pdf ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
May 17, 2022
Antonia Showering
00:46:36
In episode 87 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the very brilliant young painter, ANTONIA SHOWERING!!! *BOOK NEWS!* I have written a book! Order The Story of Art without Men here: https://www.waterstones.com/book/the-story-of-art-without-men/katy-hessel/9781529151145 Acclaimed for her richly layered paintings of family, friends, lovers and more that occupy spaces between reality and surreality, memory and imagination, Antonia Showering paints her subjects full of conviction and full of emotion. Layered with narratives of, in her words, ‘stacked recollections’, her paintings can appear at once haunting and ethereal, ghoulish yet protective, and although they are personal to her, they can speak for us all. Infused with both an acidic and muted colour palette, with thick impasto and washy strokes, Antonia’s paintings deal with universal subjects on a personal level. Speaking about the canvas, she has said: “I see the canvas as a physical space where feelings of belonging or displacement, love or loneliness, intergenerational memory, superstitions and regrets can be turned into something visual and shared with the viewer.” Born in London, and raised in Somerset, to an English father and Swiss-Chinese mother, Antonia’s upbringing, family and heritage play central roles in her work. Having completed her foundation year at Chelsea, her BA at City and Guilds, and then her MFA at the Slade School of Art, Antonia, in just a few years, has become one of the most exciting young painters of her generation. Featured in exhibitions at Stephen Friedman Gallery and TJ Boulting, New Contemporaries and of course The Great Women Artists Residency at Palazzo Monti, Antonia recently had her first solo exhibition at Timothy Taylor which was met with acclaim. ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
May 10, 2022
Susan Weininger on Gertrude Abercrombie
00:44:56
In episode 86 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the esteemed scholar Susan Weininger on the surrealist sensation, GERTRUDE ABERCROMBIE!!! Gertrude Abercrombie (1909–1977) was a formative contributor to mid-century American painting. Based in Chicago, Abercrombie was a surrealist painter and self-dubbed ‘queen of bohemia'. Working independently from the Surrealist group in Europe, Abercrombie spent most of her life immersed in the Chicago jazz scene. With a penchant for cats, crescent and full moons, sinister desert-like landscapes that feature as paintings in bleak, cold interiors, stairs that lead to nowhere or a series of rhythmically coloured doors, Abercrombie forged a unique style, and presented her sometimes postage-stamp-sized paintings in flamboyant frames. Painting some of the most innovative, surrealist, haunting, eerie, bizarre and brilliant, paintings I’ve ever seen – whether they be slightly larger landscapes with moons, cats, doors, or stairs to nowhere, or miniscule paintings of portraits, domestic scenes or still-lifes, or levitating bodies with limbs floating in the air – Abercrombie's works are utterly fascinating. ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
May 03, 2022
Patricia Albers on Tina Modotti
00:51:24
In episode 85 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the esteemed writer Patricia Albers on TINA MODOTTI! Tina Modotti (1896–1942) was a trailblazer. Born in Italy, she found herself at the centre of Hollywood in the 1920s, the post-Revolution era of Mexico, in the midst of Communism with the Muralists, the latter of which she captured through raw images, using her camera - her tool - to engage with political and social issues. Nothing short of a revolutionary, Modotti documented the spirit of era. Her own life was never far from drama. Raised in Italy, in1913 she migrated to the US to join her father. Adored for her striking looks, she soon began work as a model, then an actor, starring ina string of Hollywood silent films.  Taking up photography, in 1923she moved to Mexico City to join the cultural avant-garde and experimented with intimate, hazy studies of close-up wilted flowers and light-filled architectural environments – some of the earliest examples of abstraction in photography.  As the 1920s progressed, and her involvement in the Communist movement deepened (officially joining the party in 1927), Modotti turned her lens towards social documentary, photographing empathetic, yet I think triumphant, portraits of locals and labourers, and took her camera to anti-fascist, leftist rallies (with friends Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera).  However, following the assassination of her then-lover, the Cubist revolutionary Julio Antonio Mella, she was forced to leave Mexico and abandon photography entirely. Fleeing Mexico for WeimarBerlin, Soviet Russia and then Spain, in 1939 she returned to MexicoCity, but died three years later in the back of a taxi... Some still question the cause of her death, viewing it with suspicion due to her ardently leftist politics!!!!  ONE OF THE GREATEST STORIES IN ART HISTORY! ENJOY! Patricia is the author of Shadows, Fire, Snow: The Life of Tina Modotti and curator of the formerly travelling exhibition, Tina Modotti and the Mexican Renaissance, a show and a book focussing on one of the greatest photographers of the early twentieth century: Tina Modotti. F ollow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Apr 26, 2022
Marina Warner on Kiki Smith and Helen Chadwick
00:39:21
In episode 84 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the historian, mythographer, critic and novelist MARINA WARNER on Kiki Smith and Helen Chadwick!!! A writer of fiction and cultural history, with a special focus on myths and fairy tales and the role of women, Marina Warner is one of the leading art writers, and in the past few years published an extensive collection of essays in Forms of Enchantment: Writings on Art and Artists. This incredible book, exploring discussions on myths, transformation, and alchemy, includes texts on the two artists we will discuss today: Kiki Smith and the late, great British artist, Helen Chadwick. Kiki Smith (b.1954) is an American artist who works across tapestry, sculpture and more, exploring ideas of mythology and regeneration. Inspired by the changes in the seasons and her own perception of animals as they change throughout the year, in her work, Smith addresses the social and spiritual aspects of human nature. Fusing images of medieval folklore with mysticism, Smith’s work blends the earthly and the fantastic, and deals with the fragility of life as well as drawing us to the details of our own ecosystem.  Helen Chadwick (c.1953–1996) was a feminist pioneer. One of the first women artists to be nominated for the Turner Prize, Chadwick was known for challenging stereotypical perceptions of the body in unconventional forms. Reinventing what a female nude could be in her work, her famous works include Ego Geometria Sum (https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/chadwick-ego-geometria-sum-the-labours-i-x-74215) and The Oval Court, part of the installation 'Of Mutability'. Chadwick had used the a range of dead animals in the installation and used the scanner of the photocopier to position the animals in animated poses as if in life. She used a blue pigment toner in this work to suggest other physical spaces such as the sea (https://collections.vam.ac.uk/item/O1032036/the-oval-court-sphere-chadwick-helen/) ENJOY! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Apr 19, 2022
Barbara Bloemink on Florine Stettheimer
00:45:15
In episode 83 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the esteemed scholar, Barbara Bloemink, on the Jazz Age visionary, FLORINE STETTHEIMER!! *BOOK NEWS!* I have written a book! Order The Story of Art without Men here: https://www.waterstones.com/book/the-story-of-art-without-men/katy-hessel/9781529151145 A feminist, multi-media artist, Jazz-Age saloniste, poet and designer who captured the vibrancy and momentum of New York City’s growth between the World Wars, Stettheimer worked across words, painting, furniture and even costume design. To me was a revelation – and just as Georgia O'Keeffe so aptly observed in her friend: "Fantasy and reality all mixed up. She was perfectly consistent with any of her inconsistencies." Although painting the glittering world of Europe and New York at the start of the twentieth century, Stettheimer was so much more than that. Above all, she was a visionary, who pioneered every field she found herself in, whether it be making costumes for Getrude Stein’s opera or boldly presenting herself in a fully-nude self portrait aged 46, reclaiming Manet’s Olympia. Inventing a new language for modernism which was so brilliantly, charmingly and uniquely her own, with its whimsical figures who burst among the skyscrapers of NYC, Stettheimer drenched her paintings in bright shimmering colours and rich thick, textures. ENJOY! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Apr 12, 2022
Magdalene Odundo
00:44:42
In episode 82 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the most renowned living artists working in ceramics, Magdalene Odundo. *BOOK NEWS!* I have written a book! Order The Story of Art without Men here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Story-Art-without-Men/dp/1529151147/ref=tmm_hrd_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1647348710&sr=8-1 [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Born in Kenya, and now living and working in the UK, where we are recording today, Odundo produces ceramic objects filled with beauty and gracefulness with their voluptuous forms and glittering surfaces. Created using a hand-coiled technique, Odundo’s laboriously produced clay-based sculptures, that range from red-orange to black, are executed in an exquisite manner. Akin or reminiscent to the shape of the female body, she has said of her medium, I’ve always equated clay with the humanity that’s within us, fragile like our bodies. It can tip over. You have it on its toes, but if you push just slightly on the wrong pivot, it will break your heart. Born in 1950, Odundo received her initial training as a graphic artist in Kenya before moving to the United Kingdom in 1971 where she enrolled on the foundation course at the Cambridge School of Art. In 1976 Odundo graduated in Ceramics, Photography and Printmaking from the University for the Creative Arts, and later completed her Postgraduate studies at the RCA. In museum collections that range from the British Museum to the the Brooklyn Museum, the V&A and the Met, Magdalene has exhibited across the globe, a recent favourite exhibitions was her spectacular display at the Hepworth Wakefield, where she put her work in dialogue with myriad artworks and artefacts from across time and from across the globe. In 2019, she was appointed Chancellor of the University for Creative Arts (UCA) and was made a Dame in the Queen’s New Year Honours list 2020. But the reason why we are speaking with Magdalene today is because not only is she currently the subject of a major exhibition at the Fitzwilliam in Cambridge, but because she will also feature in this year’s Venice Biennale, a show that will feature a staggering 180 women artists, and that I can’t wait to find out more about. ENJOY! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Apr 05, 2022
Jeffreen M. Hayes on Augusta Savage
00:44:55
In episode 81 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews Jeffreen M. Hayes on the Harlem Renaissance pioneer, Augusta Savage!! *BOOK NEWS!* I have written a book! Order The Story of Art without Men here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Story-Art-without-Men/dp/1529151147/ref=tmm_hrd_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1647348710&sr=8-1 [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Overcoming poverty, racism, and sexual discrimination, Savage is one of the greatest American artists of the 20th century and is famed for her emotionally tender and stoic life-size figures and plaster portrait busts. Raised in a strict family in Florida with a father who opposed her artistic pursuits, she arrived in New York with just $4.60, and in 1922 enrolled at The Cooper Union School of Art. Coming to the fore in the 1920s, Savage mastered emotionally tender and stoic life-size figures and plaster portrait busts (painted with shoe polish for a bronzed effect), and her subjects ranged from dignified everyday Black figures to influential Harlemites, including W. E. B. Du Bois. Working with images to elevate Black culture into mainstream America, Savage was also a key community organiser, exhibitor and teacher to so many. Not only did she become the first African American woman in the US to open her own private art gallery, she was also appointed the first director of the Harlem Community Art Center. As confirmed by Jeffreen, who has previously said: “I don’t think about Augusta Savage as someone who only made objects … [but rather as someone who] has really left behind a blueprint of what it means to be an artist that centres humanity.” ENJOY! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Mar 29, 2022
Sheila Hicks
00:33:53
In episode 80 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the legendary SHEILA HICKS! *BOOK NEWS!* I have written a book! Order The Story of Art without Men here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Story-Art-without-Men/dp/1529151147/ref=tmm_hrd_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1647348710&sr=8-1 [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Working across textiles, fibre, colour and form, Sheila Hicks’s six-decade-and-counting-career has seen her work across multiple mediums, processes and disciplines. From her cascades of colour that pour out of museum ceilings to her smaller woven drawings – she likes to call ‘minimes’ – Hicks pushes all boundaries of fibre in all different environments. Born in 1934, Hicks was educated at Yale in the 50s, where she was taught by Josef Albers and George Kubler, whose teaching inspired her to venture to Chile to witness the weaving culture in the Andes. Moving to Mexico, then Paris, Hicks has designed film sets to a 1000 thread-based medallion sculpture for the Ford Foundation, NY. Recent international exhibitions include the 2020 exhibition at MAK Vienna, the 2017 Venice Biennale, the 2014 Whitney Biennial, plus a major solo presentation at the Pompidou in Paris! But! One of the reasons why we are speaking with Hicks today is because this spring she will unveil a major exhibition at the Hepworth Wakefield, a show featuring over seventy of her vibrant works which collapse all boundaries between art, architecture and design, breaking down all tensions, which in turn create environments where we can be at one with the work. Info about the Hepworth Wakefield show!!! https://hepworthwakefield.org/whats-on/sheila-hicks/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Mar 23, 2022
Alexandra Munroe on Yoko Ono
00:48:29
WELCOME BACK TO SEASON 7 of the GWA Podcast! I have some exciting news... I have written a book! The Story of Art without Men will be published by Penguin on 8 September 2022, and is available to pre-order now: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Story-Art-without-Men/dp/1529151147/ref=tmm_hrd_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1647348710&sr=8-1  Taking its name from Gombrich’s Story of Art (which includes just one woman!!), this book aims to retell art history with PIONEERING non-male artists who spearheaded movements and redefined the canon. Beginning in the 1500s and ending with those defining the 2020s, this ~FULLY illustrated 500+ page~ book is divided into five parts pinpointing major shifts in art history... ...BACK TO THE PODCAST! In episode 79 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews Alexandra Munroe on YOKO ONO! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] A pioneering authority on modern and contemporary Asian art and transnational art studies, Dr Alexandra Munroe is both the Director, Curatorial Affairs, at the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, and Senior Curator, Asian Art at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York City, where she has also led the museum’s Asian Art Initiative.  Yoko Ono – a visionary, performance art and fluxus pioneer, whose extensive career has spanned from the 50s to the present day – is one of the world's leading artists. An advocate for world peace who has trailblazed both music and art, in pieces that continue to raise vital questions about the world we live in today, Yoko Ono is nothing short of an icon. Now aged 89, her extensive career has seen her fight for global injustices and make protest part of her art. She works with her body, uses objects familiar to us, employs words that I find speak to us on such a universal level, an example being her “instructions” series that open up the world in such illuminating ways it’s impossible to not to see the world in an entirely new way. A pioneer in Performance Art, Yoko Ono (born 1933) set the precedent for disruptive performance pieces that simultaneously challenge and enforce a dialogue between artist and viewer. Raised in Japan, by 1953 she had settled in New York, and it was here that she became involved in the city’s avant-garde Fluxus group: a predominantly political group of artists, poets and musicians who were invested in chance encounters and the unpredictability of performance. In this episode we discuss Ono's upbringing in Japan and the state of the country postwar, her foray into the NYC Downtown avant-garde scene, her first encounter with John Lennon who was mesmerised by her 'YES' work, her radical performances, such as Cut Piece, 1964, which questioned the power of trust and was one of the earliest works to invite audience participation. Plus, her Wish Trees, music and poetry, and more!!! MORE LINKS: LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Mar 16, 2022
Deborah Levy on Francesca Woodman, Lee Miller, Paula Rego, Leonora Carrington
00:47:42
In episode 78 – and SEASON FINALE – of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the very brilliant writer, DEBORAH LEVY on photographers Francesca Woodman and surrealist Lee Miller, and painters Paula Rego and surrealist Leonora Carrington!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] The author of seven novels, Levy is one of the leading writers of our time having been shortlisted twice each for the Goldsmiths Prize and the Man Booker Prize. She has also written for The Royal Shakespeare Company and her pioneering theatre writing is collected in Levy: Plays 1. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, and, she has also taught writing at the Royal College of Art for ten years. But the reason why we are speaking with Deborah today is because over the past few years, she has brought out one of the greatest – and most emotionally daring – trilogy of memoirs, which she sees as a living autobiography on writing, gender politics and philosophy: Things I Don't Want to Know, The Cost of Living, and Real Estate, which throughout unexpectedly make short segues to female artists – from Francesca Woodman to Louise Bourgeois – as though their work becomes a character, an emotion, or reminds you of elements in your daily life. It is such a beautiful and relatable way about talking about art, and as an art lover, captivating to see artists’ work interwoven like this. So, I thought what better way to celebrate this special episode by looking into the lives and works of four women artists from her brilliantly unique perspective. I am so delighted to say that today we will discuss photographers Francesca Woodman and surrealist Lee Miller, and painters Paula Rego and surrealist Leonora Carrington…  LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! Some links: https://www.penguin.co.uk/books/253221/things-i-don-t-want-to-know/9780241983089.html https://www.penguin.co.uk/books/295634/the-cost-of-living/9780241977569.html https://www.penguin.co.uk/books/295635/real-estate/9780241977583.html and more books! https://www.penguin.co.uk/authors/7514/deborah-levy.html THANK YOU FOR LISTENING TO SEASON 6 OF THE GWA PODCAST! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Dec 15, 2021
Bisa Butler
00:58:57
In episode 77 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the fantastic artist, BISA BUTLER!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] One of the leading artists working today, Butler uses the medium of textile for her vivid and vibrant portraits of subjects that weave personal and historical narratives of Black life. From integrating members of her own family derived from old photographs to immortalising celebrated figures from Chadwick Boseman to Frederick Douglass, or those unknown from depression-era photographs, Butler’s oeuvre aims to, in her words, “tell the story – the African American side – of American life”. Born and raised in New Jersey, where she still resides today, Butler studied for her BA at the prestigious Howard University – where she was taught under the AfriCobra group – and for an MA at Montclair State University, it was here when she first began using the medium of textiles after assembling together a portrait quilt for her grandmother. Working as a high school art teacher for more than a decade, Butler worked on her fibre creations in school holidays and at the weekend, exhibiting at churches and community centres. And it is this medium which she has come to pioneer – not only by integrating portraits in such meticulous ways, but by fusing a range of fabrics in her work – from her father’s homeland of Ghana, batiks from Nigeria, and prints from South Africa. Butler’s rise has been astronomical. Having had her first solo exhibition in 2017, within just a few years she has had solo exhibitions at the Art Institute of Chicago and the Katonah Museum of Art; made two covers for TIME Magazine, as well as a cover for New York Magazine featuring Questlove, and for those in Los Angeles, her work is currently and prominently on view at LACMA’s hotly anticipated exhibition, Black American Portraits. LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Nov 17, 2021
William J Simmons on Cindy Sherman
00:44:12
In episode 76 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews William J Simmons on the legendary CINDY SHERMAN!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Emerging in the late 1970s and early 1980s with the “Pictures Generation”, Cindy Sherman, one of the greatest living artists, once said, “through a photograph you can make people believe anything". Transforming herself into unsettlingly convincing identities evocative of Hitchcock films, horror movies, clowns, housewives, supermodels, or valley girls, Sherman’s works so brilliantly hold a mirror up to our complicated and warped society. She explores our ever-changing, superficial, abject, aspirational or society obsessed identities, of which she has said “mask the life that we put on daily”. Born of her own frustrations with societal expectations of women, Sherman began to use her body as a political tool. Playing on society’s obsession with youth, artifice, and the so-often silent, objectified female character in movies, she began work on her Untitled Films Stills, 1977–80, a series which we discuss in depth. Made up of 69 small, black-and-white images of unnervingly familiar (and disturbing) filmic characters, she plays the blonde pin-up, the perfect housewife, and the secretarial graduate about to take on the big city. At other times, she appears stranded on the road alone. The power of Sherman’s work is that she shows us versions of the truth; making us question both the reality for women, but also the context in which this character exists. Cementing her name and earning much acclaim in the New York art world, as the 70s and 80s progressed Sherman continued to reinvent the wheel. From the valley-girl-style Centrefolds, she then went totally against society and the art market’s idea of beauty and switched her lens to one of abjection for Fairy Tales and Disasters, 1985–89. Later, she turned to history and then in 2008, her Society Portraits: with Sherman playing uncomfortably lifelike, wealthy socialites, blown up to the scale as if hung in the subject’s grandiose hallway – complete with gilded frames. Their faces are filled with prosthetics, their bodies fashioned from fake nails, visible wigs, warped tights, and dolly-like shoes, the closer you look, the clearer it becomes that they are visibly and intentionally complete living façade!!!! A curator, writer, and poet based between Los Angeles and New York, Simmons is also an expert on the Pictures Generation, a group of American artists who came of age in the early 1970s known for their critical analysis of media culture, one of whom includes the great Cindy Sherman. Sherman – who today rarely ever gives interviews, as she has said it is not her place to speak about her work – is known for redefining portraiture with her performative works in which she produces, stars and directs. MORE LINKS: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000775t https://www.npg.org.uk/whatson/cindy-sherman/exhibition/ https://www.hauserwirth.com/artists/31810-cindy-sherman LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Nov 10, 2021
Kudzanai-Violet Hwami
00:39:56
In episode 75 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the most exciting young painters working today, Kudzanai-Violet Hwami !!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Born in Zimbabwe and raised between there, South Africa, and the UK, Hwami is fast becoming one of the leading artists of her generation. Having received her BA from Wimbledon College of Arts, where she was shortlisted for the Bloomberg New Contemporaries, among many other prizes; this year, Hwami completed an MFA at the Ruskin School of Art at Oxford University. In 2019, she represented her country of birth at the 58th Venice Biennale alongside three artists, and in the same year had her first institutional solo show at Gasworks in London called (15,952km) via Trans – Sahara Highway N1. Rich in colour, subject, and scale, Hwami’s exuberant and vivid paintings of self-portraits and her extended family draw on the artist’s autobiographical history. Sourced from images ranging from the internet to family photo albums, they explore representations of the black body, along with notions of sexuality, gender and spirituality. Experimenting with photography and digitally collaged images, and often incorporating other media such as silkscreen, pastel or charcoal, Hwami’s bold painting’s offer an insight into a deeply personal world, whilst also appearing universal and familiar; the artist has said, ‘with the collapsing of geography and time and space, no longer am I confined in a singular society but simultaneously I am experiencing Zimbabwe and South Africa and the UK, in my mind. I’m in the UK, but I carry those places with me everywhere I go.’ But the reason why we are speaking with Kudzanai-Violet today is because she is currently the subject of and featured in two of my favourite exhibitions up in London right now: the Hayward Gallery’s painting show “Mixing it Up” and her solo exhibition, “when you need letters for your skin” at Victoria Miro Gallery, a show i found utterly spellbinding with its poignant, personal and raw paintings -- painting she describes as “visual letters”. https://www.victoria-miro.com/artists/240-kudzanai-violet-hwami/ https://www.gasworks.org.uk/exhibitions/kudzanai-violet-hwami-2019-09-19/ https://www.instagram.com/mwana.wevhu/?hl=en LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Nov 03, 2021
Flavia Frigeri on Marisol
00:44:06
In episode 74 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the acclaimed art historian, Flavia Frigeri on 60s Pop sensation, MARISOL!!!!!!  [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Venezuelan-American artistMaria Sol Escobar (who went by the name of ‘Marisol’) (1930–2016) was hailed for her wooden sculptures with their deadpan expressions and awkward, playful stances. Merging hand-carved woodenfigures with real life objects, (forks, hats, boots, bags), she mocked right-wing America, commented on female identity, challenging Western ideals. Raised between Paris, Caracas, and Los Angeles, Marisol arrived in New York City in 1950, and quickly became a central part of the development of ‘Pop’. She attracted enormous attention in the early 60s(when she was more famous than her friend, Andy Warhol). Thousands queued up for her 1966 exhibition at Sidney Janis’s Gallery. Blank-faced, boxed in, comical and disturbing, Marisol’s hand-carved sculptures reflect the silenced and sexualised women idealised by 1960s media. Her women stare blankly ahead, void of personality, connection or interest, but draped in the high fashions of the day: sporting headbands, minidresses and heeled leather boots. Working at a time when male Pop artists favoured the ‘factory-like’ approach to working(with their entourage of assistants and engagement with hard-edged, industrial materials), Marisol hit back and formed her own version of Pop. Influenced by Pre-Colombian and folk art, she hand-carved each sculpture alone, perhaps to emphasise the only ‘human’ aspect of the figures who had otherwise been stripped of their identities, personas, (and brains), all for the purpose of pleasing or fitting into society. They are a stark reminder of the trappings of femininity, still very much alive today. Currently the ‘Chanel Curator for the Collection’ at the National Portrait Gallery, London, Flavia Frigeri has held numerous curatorial posts such as at Tate Modern, where she co-curated The World Goes Pop (2015), which told a global story of pop art, breaking new ground along the way. From Latin America to Asia, and from Europe to the Middle East, this explosive exhibition explored art produced around the world during the 1960s and 1970s, showing how different cultures and countries responded to the movement, including one of the greatest artists, of the 20th century, Marisol Sol Escobar. LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Oct 26, 2021
Jordan Casteel
00:46:25
In episode 73 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the most trailblazing artists alive today, JORDAN CASTEEL !!!!!!!  [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Born and raised in Denver and now based in New York City, Casteel is hailed for her portraits and landscapes imbued with expressivity and authenticity, gestural brushwork and bold swathes of colour, which capture the fleeting and very real moments of life, closeness, and honest relationships.   Since receiving her BA from Agnes Scott College, Georgia for Studio Art in 2011, and her MFA in Painting and Printmaking from Yale School of Art, 2014, the past seven years for Casteel have been monumental. In 2020, she presented a critically-acclaimed major solo exhibition titled “Within Reach,” at the New Museum, New York; and other recent institutional solo exhibitions include “Jordan Casteel: Returning the Gaze,” presented at both the Denver Art Museum, CO (2019), and the Iris & B. Gerald Cantor Center for Visual Arts at Stanford University, CA (2019–20).   In recent years, she has participated in exhibitions at institutional venues such as SF MoMA; Art Institute of Chicago; the Metropolitan Museum of Art; Crystal Bridges; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; MoCA Los Angeles, CA (2018); The Studio Museum in Harlem, NY (2017 and 2016), where between 2015–16 she participated in their prestigious residency programme, among many others. Casteel’s paintings have graced the front cover of American Vogue, Time Magazine, and in 2019 were blown up to 1,400 square foot for Manhattan’s High Line. As of 2021, Casteel is also the recipient of a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship.   But the reason why we are speaking with Jordan today, in London I might add, is because she has just unveiled one of the most hotly anticipated exhibitions of the year, and her first ever UK solo exhibition at Massimo De Carlo: “There is a Season”, a show focussing on the minutiae of daily interactions, conversations, and connections, which embraces the ebb and flow of lived experiences, articulated by the rhythmic tick of time, which I cannot wait to find out more about… FURTHER LINKS! https://www.massimodecarlo.com/exhibition/521/there-is-a-season http://www.jordancasteel.com/ https://caseykaplangallery.com/artists/casteel/ https://www.instagram.com/jordanmcasteel/?hl=en https://www.macfound.org/fellows/class-of-2021/jordan-casteel https://www.newmuseum.org/exhibitions/view/jordan-casteel-within-reach LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! Follow us:Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hesselSound editing by Nada SmiljanicResearch assistant: Viva RuggiArtwork by @thisisaliceskinnerMusic by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Oct 20, 2021
Tacita Dean
00:38:54
In episode 72 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the most trailblazing artists alive today, Tacita Dean!!!!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Working across drawings, photographs to installations and found objects, Tacita Dean is perhaps best known for her incredibly pioneering and staggeringly beautiful work in film. Interested in capturing the “truth of the moment, the film as a medium, and the sensibilities of the individual”, it is particularly her eloquent 16 and 35mm analogue films that are carried by a sense of history, time and place, which at times become portraits of the medium itself. Painterly, unpredictable, physical and truthful, she has described her films as “depictions of their subject and therefore closer to painting than they are to narrative cinema.” Born in Canterbury, UK, Tacita studied at the Falmouth School of Art, and earned her MA from the Slade. Rising to acclaim in the 1990s and early 2000s with films such as The Green Ray and Disappearance at Sea, the latter of which earned her a nomination for the prestigious Turner Prize, Tacita now lives between Berlin and Los Angeles. A royal academician and recipient of numerous prizes, such as the Hugo Boss Prize at the Guggenheim and Sixth Benesse Prize at the 51st Venice Biennale, Tacita has exhibited all over the world, from solo exhibitions at the Tate Britain, The Royal Academy, The National Gallery and the The National Portrait Gallery; between 2014–15 she was an artist in residence at the Getty Research Institute; and in 2011 she filled Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall with her mammoth, 13-metre-high film, Film, which has been described as a lovingly spliced poem of hand-tinted images. But the reason why we are also speaking with Tacita Dean today, is because she is about to unveil her most recent commission: the set design and costumes for a new ballet The Dante Project: a collaboration with the Royal Ballet’s choreographer Wayne McGregor at the Royal Opera House, London. And she is also the subject of solo exhibitions across both Frith Street spaces, featuring these forthcoming designs, plus incredible films such as 150 years of painting, featuring a conversation between Julie Mehretu and Luchita Hurtado, and Pan Amicus, which was filmed entirely on the estate of the Getty Center and Villa. Further links: https://www.frithstreetgallery.com/artists/5-tacita-dean/ https://www.roh.org.uk/tickets-and-events/the-dante-project-by-wayne-mcgregor-details https://www.mariangoodman.com/exhibitions/459-tacita-dean-the-dante-project-one-hundred-and-fifty/ LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Oct 12, 2021
Charlie Porter on Louise Bourgeois, Anne Truitt, Sarah Lucas, Martine Syms
00:49:49
In episode 71 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the acclaimed writer, fashion critic, and art curator, Charlie Porter on Louise Bourgeois, Anne Truitt, Sarah Lucas and Martine Syms !!!!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] In this episode, which will work slightly differently from normal, we will focus on four artists mentioned in Charlie's latest book, one of my favourite books of this year: What Artists Wear!!! An incredibly fascinating book that chronicles the lives and careers of artists through their clothes and how they have worn, incorporated, used, recycled, referenced, and drawn from garments from the early 20th century to the present day. From chapters dedicated to Louise Bourgeois and Martine Syms, an in-depth look into the history of the suit (think Frida Kahlo to Georgia O’Keeffe); a focus on the subject of workwear with the likes of Agnes Martin and Barbara Hepworth, and how they dressed ‘for the studio’. What ‘casual’ means today, how artists have worn jeans, how they integrate clothing for performance or made ‘wearable art’, to those who use garments as their chosen medium or for acts of transformation. This book, for me, provided such a rich, fascinating insight into artists and their work, mostly for the reason that it offered an alternative viewpoint. Never has something made me think so deeply about how artists presented themselves, and in effect our own identities, but also how clothing has been used in art in so many different ways, circumstances, and for so many different reasons. ENJOY!!!!!! A visiting lecturer in fashion at the University of Westminster, Charlie is one of the leading cultural commentators of our time and has been described as one of the most influential fashion journalists of his generation, with many of his garments now in the collection of the V&A. Further links: https://www.penguin.co.uk/books/314/314590/what-artists-wear/9780141991252.html#:~:text=In%20What%20Artists%20Wear%2C%20style,at%20home%20and%20at%20play. https://lismorecastlearts.ie/read-watch-listen/curator-of-palimpsest-charlie-porter-gives-an-introduction-to-the-exhibition LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Sound recording by Amber Miller Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Oct 05, 2021
Nick Willing on Paula Rego
00:57:17
In episode 70 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the SON, Nick Willing, of one of the greatest living artists, his mother, PAULA REGO !!!!!!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Wow is this one of the most joyous, brilliant, electric and INSIGHTFUL episodes. Nick speaks so beautifully on his mother, her life, her art, her commitment to painting, her greatness at telling stories and twisting them on its head. A few years ago, Nick, a director and writer, made an incredible documentary, "Secrets and Stories", where he filmed and interviewed his mother over the course of a year.  Rego, now 86, is currently the subject of a MAMMOTH exhibition of her work at Tate Britain. Featuring paintings, drawings, collages and more, spanning from the 1950s up until recent years, Rego’s works have dealt with both epic and personal stories on large and small scales. Painting our deepest secrets, desires, fears, or the familiar stories we learnt in childhood – but question as adults – freedom, family dynamics, art history, and so much more, I don’t think there is a single artist whose works have captured me so much. After all, she has said: “Art is the only place you can do what you like. That’s freedom.” Born in 1935, Rego grew up in Portugal under the military dictatorship of Salazar. She enrolled at London’s Slade School in the 50s. Already as a teenager was Rego able to look deep into people and paint expressive truths, as seen in an early portrait of her father. Returning to Portugal, she painted the bloody reality of life as a human, but most importantly, as a woman.  Through her paintings, she gave (and gives) women a voice. For the record, until 2007, women couldn't have a legal abortion (a change in law in part thanks to Rego’s propagandistic, brave, but painful images of women experiencing unsafe abortions). Rego documented life living with an unfaithful husband (her work The Dance says it all: the male protagonist’s untrustworthy gaze that catches our eyes, beautifully described by Nick), who became progressively ill in his later years, and who she cared for.  But although her works are personal to her, they speak universally, spanning time, age, cultures. They feel utterly contemporary, but also historic. They address epic themes on an epic scale. They feel Baroque, operatic, theatrical. But always so real, with Rego always bringing it back to the personal. I hope you enjoy this episode! Further links:  Tate show! https://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-britain/exhibition/paula-rego https://www.victoria-miro.com/artists/238-paula-rego/ Nick's documentary!!!! You can't miss: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t7eNo6goFeg&t=1s&ab_channel=Byrnzie400 LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant + sound recorder: Viva Ruggi  Artwork by @thisisaliceskinnerMusic by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Sep 28, 2021
Leilah Babirye
00:41:30
In episode 68 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the great sculptor, Leilah Babirye !!!!!!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Working across painting, sculpture, to assemblage; on paper, ceramics, wood and more; using carving, burnishing, weaving and wielding, since graduating around ten years ago, Babirye has become one of the most acclaimed and forward thinking sculptors of this generation. Hailed for her experimental processes, Babirye is also renowned for her vital addressing of narratives surrounding identity, sexuality, and human rights, and her frequent use of traditional West African masks as a way of exploring queer identities.  Born in Kampala, Uganda, and now working in Brooklyn, NYC, Babirye studied art at Makerere University in Kampala, where she was exposed to some formative teaching by some formidable female sculptors. However, in the wake of Uganda’s 2013 anti-homosexuality bill, Babirye went to NYC where she participated in the acclaimed Fire Island Artist Residency. In 2018, she was granted asylum in the US, and has since risen to prominence with two major solo exhibitions in New York City at Gordon Robichaux.  Babirye’s work is like nothing I’ve ever seen before. Both mighty and intimate, heroic and fragile, whether it be her paintings, ceramics or sculptures, they never fail to blow me away. Often using wood or ceramics as a base, she then embellishes them with discarded objects collected from the streets, and what results are towering, powerful, glittering regal-like figures, who unite in the form of imagined queer clans. Speaking about her work she has said:  “Through the act of burning, nailing and assembling, I aim to address the realities of being gay in the context of Uganda and Africa in general. Recently, my working process has been fuelled by a need to find a language to respond to the recent passing of the anti-homosexuality bill in Uganda.” But! The reason why we are speaking with Leilah today, is because last summer she had an AMAZING exhibition at London's Stephen Friedman Gallery, which we discuss in depth! I hope you enjoy this episode! Further links:  https://www.stephenfriedman.com/artists/66-leilah-babirye/ http://www.gordonrobichaux.com/leilah.babirye.html https://www.theartnewspaper.com/interview/leilah-babirye https://www.newyorker.com/goings-on-about-town/art/leilah-babirye LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi  Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Sep 21, 2021
Phyllida Barlow
00:47:52
In episode 68 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the great sculptor, PHYLLIDA BARLOW !!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Simultaneously colossal and intimate, precarious and triumphant, stoic and ephemeral, Phyllida Barlow’s all-engulfing sculptures, made from cement, cardboard, fabric, to chicken wire, don’t just force a redressing of sculpture in art history, but they question the limitless potentials of the versatile medium. Taking influence from her surroundings, and in turn influencing and challenging ours, they distort all sense of perspective, challenge sculptural conventions, and make us breathe, inhabit, and experience the medium in ways that no artist has done before. Full of tension and awkwardness, but also the familiarity of the everyday, for over fifty years Barlow's sculptures have questioned not only the history of the medium, but the role of monuments in modern day society. Born in Newcastle, and raised in postwar London, Barlow studied at Chelsea School of Art, and went on to complete her MA at the Slade, the latter of which she taught at for four decades, until 2009. Barlow has exhibited across the globe at the world’s most renowned museums including, the Serpentine, taking over the Tate’s Duveen Galleries, Haus de Kunst, and in 2017, represented Britain at the Venice Biennale. She is also a Royal Academician. But the reason why we are speaking with Barlow today is because she has not only just published an incredible book on her collected lectures, writings, and interviews – of which a favourite of mine is her on Eva Hesse, aptly titled, Lost for Words – but she is currently the subject of a solo presentation at London’s Highgate Cementary AND an exhibition at Hauser and Wirth, the latter of which features a large-scale ‘sculptural intervention’ consisting of over 100 brightly coloured cement posts more than 20 feet tall, forming a circular barricade, which in typical Barlow style, blocks, stunts, distorts our normal viewing space and forces us to re-situate ourselves in the galleries, resulting in new paths forged, new sight lines experienced. I hope you enjoy this episode! Further links: www.hauserwirth.com/hauser-wirth-ex…phyllida-barlow www.royalacademy.org.uk/article/digit…t-documentary www.hauserwirth.com/artists/2826-phyllida-barlow www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-bri…4-phyllida-barlow hausderkunst.de/en/exhibitions/phyllida-barlow LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Sep 14, 2021
Raquel Cecilia Mendieta on Ana Mendieta
00:51:03
In episode 67 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the filmmaker Raquel Cecilia Mendieta on her aunt, one of the greatest artists ever to live: Ana Mendieta.  The day of this episode's release: 8 September 2021, is the 36th anniversary of Ana's death, who died aged 36 in 1985.  [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] "I use the earth as a canvas and my soul as an instrument." A pioneer of Performance Art who used the body as her primary tool, Mendieta’s career was radically experimental. Born in pre-revolutionHavana, Cuba, Mendieta’s life changed when Castro came to power, and her father(an enemy of the new regime) was imprisoned. Exiled from Cuba and sent toAmerica – arriving in Florida then settling in Iowa, aged 12 – Mendieta remained separated from her parents and birth country for years. Enrolling in the University of Iowa, it was here where she thrived. First experimenting with painting, Mendieta went on to employ the body as her primary medium. Constructing her 'Facial Cosmetic Variations' and 'Facial Hair Transplants', she pioneered the use of props and prosthetics as 'acts of transformations'. But being "possessed by nature",  by 1973, she was exploring her siluetas.  Interrogating themes of memory, history, displacement, and rebirth, Mendieta used her body as her instrument when conducting more than 200 performative and ephemeral ‘sculptures’ (which she called siluetas). Through methods of burning, carving, or planting, Mendieta sought to ‘become one with the earth’, moulding the outlines of her body onto the soil of Iowa, Mexico, and from 1980, Cuba.  In this episode we discuss the pure POWER of Mendieta's work, her connection to the Earth, life in Iowa and NYC and her later career at the American Academy in Rome. Ana was a true pioneer. And speaking to the fantastic Raquel, who has made many beautiful films on her aunt, we get an insight into who she was, her rebellious spirit, love and care for those around her, and pure excitement for her life and work.  Enjoy!!! Further links:  https://www.galerielelong.com/artists/estate-of-ana-mendieta https://jeudepaume.org/en/evenement/ana-mendieta-2/ https://alisonjacques.com/artists/ana-mendieta LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi  Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Sep 07, 2021
Lisa Yuskavage
00:50:08
In episode 66 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the acclaimed painter, LISA YUSKAVAGE! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Commanding and vulnerable, inviting and resisting, psychologically intense, addressing shame and provocations, Lisa Yuskavage began her paintings of doll-like, pre-pubescent, semi-naked women in the early 1990s. Often emerging from a technicolored, acid-like pool of saturated pinks, greens, reds, or yellows, Yuskavage combines art historical colouring techniques for her images that are as much about an exploration of light and colour, as they are about the female figure. Belonging to no one but themselves, her figures claim the gaze free from authority and own their sexuality. Born in Philadelphia, and having received her BFA from the Tyler School of Art, Temple University, in 1984 and her MFA from Yale, since the early 1990s, Lisa Yuskavage has been a force in the New York painting scene, whose incredible influence has spread worldwide, especially for younger artists working today – as often mentioned on this podcast – for her bold, radical, pioneering and innovative use of colour, subject, style and form. In museum collections worldwide, including the Hammer, Hirshhorn, ICA Boston, The Met, MoMA, Whitney, SF MoMA and many more, Yuskavage’s work has been the subject of numerous solo exhibitions, including at Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania, Museo Tamayo Arte Contemporáneo, Mexico City, the Aspen Art Museum, and the Baltimore Museum of Art, the latter of which is currently on view until 19 September 2021. But… the reason why we are speaking with Yuskavage today is because this September, 2021, she will unveil a series of new works for an exhibition with David Zwirner in NYC, where she is represented. Titled, New Paintings, the exhibition brings together her signature color-field compositions saturated in jewel-like pigments of red, green, yellow, and pink, with figurative depictions full of theatricality, tension, dynamism and vulnerability, depicting models – which recall the tension between seer and seen – or dramatic scenes derived from the studio or art-school classrooms, all of which are rooted in both art history and the present day. Further links: https://www.davidzwirner.com/artists/lisa-yuskavage https://artbma.org/exhibition/lisa-yuskavage-wilderness https://yuskavage.com/ https://www.davidzwirner.com/exhibitions/2021/more-life/jesse-murry LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Aug 31, 2021
Eileen Myles on Joan Mitchell
00:46:15
WELCOME BACK TO SEASON 6 OF THE GWA PODCAST! In episode 65 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the acclaimed poet EILEEN MYLES on the legendary painter, JOAN MITCHELL! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] A resident of New York City since 1974, Eileen Myles has been one of the greatest living poets of the last few decades. Their recent poem Eight Poems and Joan Mitchell’s City Landscape, is featured in the most extensive book of Joan Mitchell to date (published by Yale University Press: https://yalebooks.yale.edu/book/9780300247275/joan-mitchell); a text exploring Myles’s own relationship to the late great artist, whose tough, bold, gestural, almost indestructible 1955 painting, City Landscape, is described by them as “bitch work. It’s tooth and claw”. One of the foremost Abstract Expressionist painters, Joan Mitchell was born in 1925 in Chicago. A competitive figure skater as a kid, Mitchell entered the NY art scene in 1950, and a year later, exhibited in the iconic 1951 Ninth Street Show.  A frequenter of the hard-drinking Cedar Tavern, immersed in the NY 50s poetry scene (she was a great friend of Frank O'Hara) and famed for her feisty personality, as a painter Mitchell was a genius at transforming paint into gusts of light, energy and movement.Applying her oils with strokes that varied from feathery and translucent to thick and aggressive, she looked to the French Impressionists for influence.  Whereas in the first half of the 1950s, Mitchell’s work resembled lyrical, loosely formed shapes, as the decade progressed(following her regular travels to France from ‘55), her work transformed into more intense compositions. At times working on paintings far taller than she was, you can almost imagine her jumping up, fighting the work with industrial, heavyweight brushes.  Whether it be rage at the system or anger at her father, the vigour of her gesture proves her worthy of being recognised as one of the greatest artists of the 20th century. Not to mention the dazzling tones these paintings emits. Witness one in the flesh, and you get lost in her world. As one of the leading poets ALIVE, Myles's take on Mitchell is fascinating -- listen out for the poem they wrote about preparing for the podcast too!  Further links:  https://www.joanmitchellfoundation.org/joan-mitchell https://www.davidzwirner.com/artists/joan-mitchell https://artbma.org/exhibition/joan-mitchell/ https://www.eileenmyles.com/ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gTWH2rRJKXA&ab_channel=LouisianaChannel LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Nada Smiljanic Research assistant: Viva Ruggi Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Aug 24, 2021
Ali Smith on Barbara Hepworth, Pauline Boty, Tacita Dean, and Lorenza Mazzetti
01:05:17
In episode 64 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the acclaimed writer ALI SMITH (!!!!) on Pauline Boty, Barbara Hepworth, Tacita Dean and Lorenza Mazzetti !!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] The FINAL episode of Season 5 of the GWA Podcast, we speak to one of the GREATEST authors and writers in the world, Ali Smith, about the artists who act as the 'spine' for her recently-completed series of four stand-alone novels, grouped as the Seasonal Quartet: Pauline Boty in Autumn, Barbara Hepworth in Winter, Tacita Dean in Spring, and filmmaker Lorenza Mazetti in Summer, who in their own way, as presences as people, spirits, or their work, interweave into each story so beautifully.  Written in the space of four years, between 2016–2020, these books track and are witness to, some of the most unprecedented, and extraordinary events in living history. Beginning with Autumn, known as the first-Brexit novel, the final book in the series, Summer, was written in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic. Born in Inverness, Scotland, and now based in Cambridge, Ali Smith is acclaimed for her fictional work, and non-fiction writing on some of my favourite artists. The author of Public library and other stories, How to be both, Shire, Artful, and MANY OTHERS, Smith has been shortlisted for the Booker Prize, the Orange Prize, The Man Booker Prize, and has won the Bailey's Prize, the Goldsmiths Prize and the Costa Novel of the Year Award for her brilliant novel, How To Be Both. PAULINE BOTY – AUTUMN One of the most important artists to change the face of British Pop Art (as well as being an Actress, TV star, radio commentator, who read Proust) Pauline Boty EPITOMISED the possibilities of the modern Pop woman. She captured the glamour and vivacity of the 1960s, including those of music stars to film icons, think Marylin to Elvis, Boty worshipped the proliferation of imagery available in the post-War era.  BARBARA HEPWORTH – WINTER The Titan of British sculpture, Hepworth set up a studio in St Ives during World War II, and is hailed for her small-to-colossal hand-carved wooden sculptures. Cast in stone and bronze, sometimes embedded with strings or flashes of colour, and  fluctuating between hard and soft, light and dark, round and straight, solid and hollow, the spirit of Hepworth's work is at the spine of Spring and through Ali's incredible writing makes us SEE differently.  TACITA DEAN – SPRING Filmmaker and artist, Dean, seven-metre-wide work The Montafon Letter is a vast chalk drawing on nine blackboards joined together, looms in Spring (and is also an exhibition visited by the protagonist Richard at the Royal Academy). Dean says in some ways the work about Brexit and about hope; “hope that the last avalanche will uncover us”. Much like Smith's post-Brexit novels.  LORENZA MAZZETTI – SUMMER A new artist for me, this story of the Italian-born filmmaker who came of age in the 1960s is one of the most profound in the history of art. I am not going to tell you anything else other than listen to Ali tell her story.  LINKS TO ALI'S BOOKS! https://www.waterstones.com/book/autumn/ali-smith/9780241973318 https://www.waterstones.com/book/winter/ali-smith/9780241973332 https://www.waterstones.com/book/spring/ali-smith/9780241973356 https://www.waterstones.com/book/summer/ali-smith/9780241973370 We also discuss How To Be Both at the very start! https://www.waterstones.com/book/how-to-be-both/ali-smith/9780141025209 LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Winnie Simon Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
May 11, 2021
Emma Ridgway on Ruth Asawa
01:02:08
In episode 63 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the esteemed curator Emma Ridgway of Modern Art Oxford on the majorly influential, RUTH ASAWA (where she is set to have an exhibition in 2022!!!).  [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Artist, educator, trailblazer and sculptor, Ruth Asawa is up there with the greatest and most influential artists of the entire 20th century, Best known for her looped-wire sculptures that expand form, defy structure, and blurring all illusions between hard and soft, tall and small, strongand fragile, RuthAsawa's works ranged from colossal to small enough to fit in your hand.   The fourth of seven siblings, Ruth Asawa was brought up on a rural farm in California by immigrant parents of Japanese descent. Curious and energetic, she spent her childhood helping out on the farm by wiring beans, and attending Japanese calligraphy classes. But as it was the 1930s, the racial prejudice against people of Japanese heritage was worsening. Following the attack on Pearl Harbour, around 120,000 Japanese-Americans were placed in internment camps, including a teenage Ruth Asawa. Which in this episode, we speak about in great depth.   But against the demonstrative conditions and dehumanising set up, communities came together.Providing education for the young people in the camps, professional artists stepped up, and Ruth was taught by some of the greatest Disney animators of the day. Shaped by her teachers, Asawa set out to be an educator herself. However, despite training for three years, was denied a job due to racial prejudices.  So, in the summer of 1946, she enrolled at Black MountainCollege, and it was here where she flourished: ‘I spent three years there and encountered great teachers who gave me enough stimulation to last me for the rest of my life.’ Taking classes with Josef and Anni Albers to Buckminster Fuller (whose hair she cut for a bit of extra money!), Asawa took the BMC approach to her career, by inextricably linking art with life, and life with art.  Moving to SF in '49, Asawa's legacy in setting up art education is tough to compete with. And it is there that she still remains an icon, with the Ruth Asawa School of Arts still very much in full swing today.  I am not exaggerating when I say this may be the most extraordinary, hopeful, brilliant story in art history. I really hope you enjoy this as much as I did.   LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! FURTHER LINKS! https://www.davidzwirner.com/artists/ruth-asawa https://www.modernartoxford.org.uk/event/citizen-of-the-universe/ https://ruthasawa.com/life/black-mountain-college/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Winnie Simon Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/ Ruth Asawa: Citizen of the Universe is curated by Emma Ridgway and Vibece Salther, organised in partnership by Modern Art Oxford UK and Stavanger Art Museum Norway, supported by the Terra Foundation for American Art.    Opens 28 May - 21 Aug 2022 at Modern Art Oxford then 1 Oct 2022 - 22 Jan 2023 at Stavanger Art Museum. I CAN'T WAIT!
May 04, 2021
Cindy Kang on Berthe Morisot
00:49:17
In episode 62 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the esteemed curator CINDY KANG of the Barnes Foundation on the Impressionist giant, BERTHE MORISOT! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] And WOW is this an incredible insight into Morisot, who was the FIRST woman to ever exhibit with the Impressionists in 1874, and THE woman who paved the way for the Modern Parisian woman.  Praised for her quick, feathery, brushstrokes, infused with light and vivid colouring, Morisot's subjects ranged from family life to the fashionable women of Paris. Unlike her male counterparts, Morisot had access to the private boudoirs of women, who she captured full of vivacity, and radiating in modernity. Born into an upper-middle class family, along with her sister, Edma, she showed great passion and skill for art from an early age. As a result, they were encouraged and financed by their wealthy parents, who hired one of the foremost tutors in Paris, who told them they were so good it was a CATASTROPHE!  For the next decade, Morisot would become fully immersed in Parisian life, exhibiting, socialising, and befriending the likes of Édouard Manet, whose brother, Eugène, she would go on to marry. He was fully supportive of her career. Morisot was written about by Émile Zola, and had her work sold by the best picture dealers in Paris.  Continuing to radicalise conventions in painting, during the 1880s, Morisot’s brushwork became increasingly loose. Towards the end of her life, Morisot was veering towards working in a Symbolist fashion, as executed in one of her final paintings of her daughter, Portrait of Miss J. M. (Julie Dreaming), 1894, created the year before her life was sadly cut short due to a battle with pneumonia. LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! FURTHER LINKS! Cindy's exhibition:  https://www.barnesfoundation.org/whats-on/morisot https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/10/29/berthe-morisot-woman-impressionist-emerges-from-the-margins https://nmwa.org/art/artists/berthe-morisot/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Winnie Simon Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Apr 27, 2021
Stephanie Rosenthal on Yayoi Kusama
00:49:28
In episode 61 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the esteemed curator and Director of Berlin's Gropius Bau, Dr Stephanie Rosenthal on the legendary artist, YAYOI KUSAMA!!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] And WOW is this an incredible insight to the iconic Japanese artist, who works across film to painting, performance, sculpture to installation, drawing and collage, to her famous Infinity Mirror Rooms, who is about to be the subject of a MAJOR exhibition at Gropius Bau (curated by Stephanie!!). Info here: https://www.berlinerfestspiele.de/en/berliner-festspiele/programm/bfs-gesamtprogramm/programmdetail_299677.html Born in Matsumoto City, Japan in 1929, to parents who ran a plant factory, the young Kusama studied painting in Kyoto. Establishing herself in the Japanese art scene from her early twenties, it was after a brief correspondence with none other than GEORGIA O'KEEFFE in the 50s, that she abandoned her native country. She arrived in NYC in 1958, with a suitcase of drawings and one aspiration: “To grab everything that went on in the city and become a star”.  Formidably ambitious, with “mountains of creative energy stored inside myself”, she succeeded. Situating herself amongst the cultural New York avant-garde elite, Kusama immediately began to make paintings evocative of the American style, as seen in her Infinity Net series. However, she went one step further with her microscopic, miniscule, repetitive and monochromatically coloured gestures that bridged both the emotive and visible brush mark of Abstract Expressionism and technical precision of Minimalism.  She went on to create thousands of soft sculptures of in which phallic protrusions covered household objects. Kusama also pushed forward ways of working with performance, installation and underground films... however was often copied by her male contemporaries! In 1973, she moved back to Japan, however in 1993, she returned to the spotlight when representing Japan at the Venice Biennale where she showcased all-encompassing mirror rooms. Re-catapulted to stardom in the western art world, Kusama today remains (arguably) the most famous female artist on the planet: between 2013–2018 she drew in FIVE MILLION visitors alone! LISTEN NOW + ENJOY!!! FURTHER LINKS! Stephanie's exhibition:  https://www.berlinerfestspiele.de/en/berliner-festspiele/programm/bfs-gesamtprogramm/programmdetail_299677.html https://www.victoria-miro.com/artists/31-yayoi-kusama/ For those in NYC! https://www.nybg.org/event/kusama/ ...and in LONDON THIS SUMMER!  https://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/exhibition/yayoi-kusama-infinity-mirror-roomsWhitney Museum collection!  https://whitney.org/exhibitions/yayoi-kusama#exhibition-artworks https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artists/yayoi-kusama-8094/introduction-yayoi-kusama https://www.davidzwirner.com/artists/yayoi-kusama Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Winnie Simon Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Apr 20, 2021
Julie Mehretu
00:53:32
In episode 60 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviewsone of the greatest artists of our time, the inimitable JULIE MEHRETU !!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Revolutionising abstract painting for the twenty-first century, filled with frenzied vortexes and orderly and disorderly lines, Mehretu is acclaimed for her all-encompassing, large-scale, gestural paintings built up through layers of acrylic paint, and overlaid with frenetic mark-making. Referencing art history – from the Old Masters, dynamism of the Italian Futurists to the enveloping scale of Abstract Expressionism – and past civilizations while addressing the most immediate conditions of our contemporary moment, including migration, revolution, climate change, global capitalism, and technology, Mehretu’s points of departure are architecture, people and the city. In particular, the densely populated urban environments of the 21st Century. Working on a colossal scale, with intricate details and pockets of information when witnessed up close, step back and Mehretu’s paintings enable you to survey a world from afar. Erupting with colour, line, energy and movement, they evoke histories both evolving and collapsing, much like the conflictingly progressive, yet backward, world we find ourselves in today. Born in Ethiopia, and from an early age, raised in the United States, where she lives and works today, Mehretu studied at the Kalamazoo College, Michigan, followed by RISD. An artist-in-resident at the esteemed Studio Museum in Harlem in the early 2000s, Mehretu has since gone on to exhibit extensively around the world, from solo exhibitions at the Louisiana in Copenhagen to the Guggenheim in New York City, to numerously participating in Biennales all over the globe, from Venice to Sydney to Istanbul. She is a recipient of the American Art Award from the Whitney Museum of American Art, the prestigious MacArthur Fellows Award, and has been awarded the US Department of State Medal of Arts Award. But the reason why we are speaking today, is because Mehretu is currently the subject of a major touring retrospective of her work from the last 25 years, co-curated by esteemed curators Christine Y. Kim with Rujeko Hockley, which is currently on view at The Whitney, was previously at LACMA and the High Museum of Art, Atlanta, Georgia, and will go on to the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis. And unsurprisingly, has been met with astonishing reviews! Check out her Whitney show here: https://whitney.org/exhibitions/julie-mehretu And WOW, is this one of the most enriching, enlightening conversations I have ever had. THANK YOU JULIE!!! Works discussed:  Migration Direction Map (Large), 1996 Untitled (Yellow with Ellipses), 1998 Renegrade Excavation, 2001 Stadia Series, 2004 Mogamma Seres, 2012 Conjured Parts (eye), Ferguson, 2016 FURTHER LINKS! https://whitecube.com/artists/artist/julie_mehretu https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/mehretu-mogamma-a-painting-in-four-parts-part-3-t13997 https://www.lacma.org/art/exhibition/julie-mehretu https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/21/arts/design/julie-mehretu-and-success.html Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Winnie Simon Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Apr 13, 2021
Jennifer Higgie on Suzanne Valadon
00:44:16
In episode 59 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews acclaimed writer JENNIFER HIGGIE on the great Parisian painter, Suzanne Valadon (1863–1938) !!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] And WOW, is this one of the greatest stories in art history of the acrobat-turned-artist-model-turned-artist Valadon (born Marie-Clémentine), who grew up in Montmartre, the bohemian quarter of Paris; supported herself from the age of ten; but whose life took a turn after a fall from an acrobat in her early teens!  Modelling for the likes of Renoir to Toulouse-Lautrec, despite her lack of finances to afford formal art classes, she learnt via the backdoor: by studying her male acquaintances, and close friend Edgar Degas oversaw drawing.  Known as a wild character (who spent earnings on lavish fur coats), Valadon had a complicated personal life and was often caught up in passionate love affairs (including breaking the heart of composer, Erik Satie). Taking influence from the glittering, shard-like surfaces as pioneered by the Impressionists, at the dawn of the new century, she had developed a distinct language. By 1909, she was painting professionally. Defying all gender conventions and exuding the new freedoms of women, she painted herself nude alongside Utter, (her electrician lover twenty-one-years-junior), swept up in an overgrown Eden as characters Adam and Eve.  In 1911, at aged 46, Valadon had a solo exhibition at the gallery of renowned dealer (and former clown!) Clovis Sagot, and soon cemented herself as a regular exhibitor at the Paris Salon. Within the next few years, she would stage more successful exhibitions, and in the 1920s produced her best work yet. One of which was her monumental self-portrait, The Blue Room, 1923. Lying leisurely in striped trousers and a strapped top, with a cigarette hanging out her mouth and books pushed to the back of the bed, Valadon affirmed her independence and room of one’s own with assured confidence and character. She was a modern Parisian woman in the 1920s, who could do whatever she wanted, whenever she pleased. She rose to the peak of her fame in the 1920s, and had four major retrospective exhibitions during her lifetime. Through her paintings and prints, Valadon transformed the genre of the female nude by providing an insightful expression of women’s experiences. Don't miss this AMAZING story as told by Higgie, whose INCREDIBLE book "The Mirror and the Palette: 500 Years of Women's Self Portraits" has just been released! See here: https://www.waterstones.com/book/the-mirror-and-the-palette/jennifer-higgie/9781474613774 WORKS DISCUSSED! The Blue Room (1923)  Adam and Eve (1909) The Joy of Life (1911)  Family Portrait (1912) Self Portrait (1927) Portrait of Erik Satie (1892) PAINTINGS FEATURING VALADON! The Hangover (1889) by Toulouse-Lautrec Dance at Bougival (1883) by Renoir Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Winnie Simon Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Apr 06, 2021
Diane Radycki on Paula Modersohn Becker
00:45:04
In episode 58 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the esteemed art historian, Diane Radycki, on the groundbreaking German Modernist PAULA MODERSOHN BECKER!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] And WOW, is this one of the most incredible stories in art history. A precursor to German Expressionism, Modersohn Becker was not only one of the first German artists to bring the intense and dazzling colours and brushstrokes to her home country, but the first woman artist in HISTORY to paint herself nude!!  Born in 1876, Modersohn Becker was raised in Bremen, attended art school in St John's Wood, London, went on to study at the traditional Society of Berlin Women Artists, and after spending a summer visiting the Worpswede art colony, settled with the group from 1898. However, she wasn't satisfied.  On the stroke of a new century, 1 January 1900, Modersohn Becker took a train heading for Paris, and it was here where she became enraptured by the French Modernists, their vibrant, fragmented forms. But most importantly, where she was exposed to drawing from the nude figure! Taking up portraits and scenes of peasant life, Modersohn-Becker’s work exuded strong, sun-drenched intense colouring and dynamism, full of expression and emotion (in 1902 she recalled, ‘personal feeling is the main thing’). But having returned to Germany, during this time she was stifled by her marriage, sucked into Worpswede life and longing for Paris. Retuning for the last time in 1906, she abandoned her life: ‘I have left Otto Modersohn and stand poised between my new life. What will it be like? And what will I be like in my new life? Now it is all about to happen.’  During spring and summer of 1906, Modersohn-Becker produced dozens of paintings. Predominantly self-portraits and portraits of un-idealised, unconventional, and un-sensual looking women, she filled with canvases with simplified flattened forms. Radickye makes the convincing case that Modersohn Becker was even the influence behind Picasso's Gertrude Stein! Immersed in her life in Paris, attending exhibitions, Modersohn-Becker was enjoying life as a free woman. But having returned to Germany in 1907, where she was to give birth that October, aged 31, she died just a few days later, leaving behind over 700 paintings and 1000 drawings.. Don't miss this AMAZING story as told by Radickye – the woman responsible for MoMA's acquisition of a Self Portrait by Paula. Further links: Diane's book! https://yalebooks.co.uk/display.asp?k=9780300185300https://www.moma.org/artists/4037 https://artsandculture.google.com/exhibit/paula-modersohn-becker-kunsthalle-bremen/UAKCairRWHB0KQ?hl=en https://www.newyorker.com/books/page-turner/paula-modersohn-becker-modern-paintings-missing-piece https://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/26/arts/design/paula-modersohn-becker-and-her-thwarted-ambitions.html https://www.newyorker.com/books/page-turner/paula-modersohn-becker-modern-paintings-missing-piece Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Laura Hendry  Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Mar 30, 2021
Katarina Jerinic on Francesca Woodman
00:47:55
In episode 57 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the esteemed curator of the Woodman Foundation, Katarina Jerinic on the GROUNDBREAKING photographer, Francesca Woodman!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] And WOW is this an incredible insight to the American photographer, who in her short career produced an extraordinary body of work (over 800 photographs) acclaimed for its unique style and range of innovative techniques. Born in Colorado in 1958, at the age of thirteen Francesca Woodman took her first self-portrait. From then, up until her untimely death in 1981, aged just 22, she produced incredibly visceral, expressive, dreamlike and gothic-like photographs. From the beginning: she was both the subject and object in her work.  Fragmenting her body hiding behind furniture, using reflective surfaces such as mirrors to conceal herself, or simply cropping the image, Woodman uses photography to emphasise the isolated body parts of the human figure. Slightly surrealist, her hauntingly narrative, small-scale photographs are almost akin to plays. They are at once theatrical, Baroque and operatic, as well as still and silent. In this incredibly in-depth insight into her career as told by Jerinic, who was close to Francesca's artist parents, Betty and George Woodman, we are given a full appreciation for Woodman's life and work. From growing up in Italy, attending RISD, and her final years in New York.  Since 1986, Woodman's work has been exhibited widely and has been the subject of extensive critical study in the United States and Europe. Woodman is often situated alongside her contemporaries of the late 1970s such as Ana Mendieta and Hannah Wilke, yet her work also foreshadows artists such as Cindy Sherman, Sarah Lucas, Nan Goldin and Karen Finley in their subsequent dialogues with the self and reinterpretations of the female body. ENJOY!! Further links: https://www.woodmanfoundation.org/ WORKS DISCUSSED: Self Portrait, Aged 13, 1972 https://www.woodmanfoundation.org/artworks/self-portrait-at-13 https://www.victoria-miro.com/artists/7-francesca-woodman/ Space 2 Series (Nature Lab), 1975–76 https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2014/aug/31/searching-for-the-real-francesca-woodman#img-2 Space2 Series, 1976 https://www.woodmanfoundation.org/artworks/untitled-13 Polka Dots Series, 1976 https://www.woodmanfoundation.org/artworks/from-polka-dots Angel Series, Rome, Italy, 1977 https://www.woodmanfoundation.org/artworks/from-angel-series Untitled, 1977–78 https://www.woodmanfoundation.org/artworks/untitled-4 Eel Series, Venice, 1978 https://www.woodmanfoundation.org/artworks/from-eel-series Blueprint for a Temple, 1980 https://www.woodmanfoundation.org/artworks/blueprint-for-a-temple Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Laura Hendry  Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Mar 24, 2021
The Gee's Bend Quiltmakers!
00:41:28
In episode 56 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews Loretta Pettway Bennett and Mary Margaret Pettway of the GEE'S BEND QUILTMAKERS! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Located in a small, remote and rural community in Alabama, USA, officially known as Boykin, which is surrounded on three sides by river and has a population of around 700, the women of Gee’s Bend have been creating hundreds of quilt masterpieces dating from the early twentieth century to the present day. Electric, off-beat, full of flair, as well as both vivid and vibrant, for decades, the women of Gee’s Bend have adopted a wide range of material for their improvisatory, jazzy and geometric quilts. From denim to old patterned clothes, which they have referred to as, making something shine from something that has been thrown away.  Often quilting - and singing - in groups as they configure their stunning works, some of the women of Gee’s Bend are in the collection of the Souls Grown Deep Foundation, a non-profit organisation dedicated to the preservation and promotion of the contributions of African American artists from the Southern states, of which our guest and quilter extraordinaire, Mary Margaret Pettway is chair.  Although having been quilting for decades, with some claiming the tradition stemming from the 1800s, it has only been in recent years that the women have come to international renown and attention, exhibiting at major museums all over the world, from the Whitney Museum, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, New York’s The Met, Margate’s Turner Contemporary, and now, their first ever solo exhibition in my hometown of London at Alison Jacques Gallery, which shows quilts spanning nearly 100 years. I should add that our guests today are first cousins, who come from an important lineage of female quilters and are showing alongside three generations worth of ancestors.  Described by the New York Times as having created some of “the most miraculous works of modern art America has produced”, the women of Gee’s Bend are rightfully forcing us to readdress the art historical canon, and I couldn’t be more delighted to have them on the show today.  ENJOY!!! FURTHER LINKS! The Gee's Bend website!  https://www.soulsgrowndeep.org/gees-bend-quiltmakers Their show at Alison Jacques Gallery (don't miss if you're in London!) https://www.alisonjacquesgallery.com/exhibitions/192/overview/ More:  https://www.nytimes.com/2002/11/29/arts/art-review-jazzy-geometry-cool-quilters.html https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YHEqYVzSs7U Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Laura Hendry  Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Mar 17, 2021
Sue Tate on Pauline Boty
00:44:28
In episode 55 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews Dr Sue Tate on the incredible British Pop Artist, PAULINE BOTY !!!!!!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] One of the most important artists to change the face of British Pop Art (as well as being an Actress, TV star, radio commentator, a blonde who read Proust) Boty EPITOMISED the possibilities of the modern Pop woman. Known for capturing the glamour and vivacity of the 1960s, including those of music stars to film icons, think Marylin to Elvis, Boty worshipped the proliferation of imagery available in the post-War era. Born in Croydon in 1938, Boty studied stained glass at the Royal College of Art (when it was not deemed necessary to include female loos in the school), before going onto painting, and thrived. Translating the energy of contemporary life onto her flat-paned and bold early-mid 60s canvases, it was with warmth, mischief, humour, and fun, that Boty portrayed film stars to music icons that didn’t just explore the potential of the proliferated image, but captured them from a distinct and female point of view. “It’s almost like painting mythology, a present-day mythology – film stars, etc. The 20th-century gods and goddesses. People need them, and the myths that surround them, because their own lives are enriched by them. Pop art colours those myths.” A true great whose paintings – and personality – reflected, challenged, and emulated the time, Boty's life was sadly cut short aged 28 by cancer, in the summer of 1966, five months after giving birth. But it is through the vibrancy of her electric work that keeps the spirit of her soul alive. And my god does this story break my heart.  Dr Sue Tate is THE leading expert in Boty's life and work. Without sue’s work, conducting important primary research starting in the early 90s when Boty was barely known, in 1998 co-curating, for two London Galleries, the first solo show of Boty’s work in the UK for 35 years, In 2013 curating a major retrospective of Boty’s work at Wolverhampton Art Gallery, that toured to Pallent House Chichester and to Lodz, Poland, and authored the brilliant accompanying book Pauline Boty Pop Artist and Woman, we would not know about this brilliant, important and formative artist.  ENJOY!!! FURTHER LINKS! Pop Goes The Easel:  https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00drs8y/monitor-pop-goes-the-easel Read Ali Smith on Pauline Boty:  https://www.theguardian.com/books/2016/oct/22/ali-smith-the-prime-of-pauline-boty NY Times Obituary:  https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/20/obituaries/pauline-boty-overlooked.html Boty's Stained Glass Self Portrait:  https://www.npg.org.uk/collections/search/portrait/mw272908/Pauline-Boty?LinkID=mp10131&role=sit&rNo=0 Boty's works as discussed:  https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artists/pauline-boty-2684 https://artuk.org/discover/artists/boty-pauline-19381966 Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Laura Hendry  Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Mar 10, 2021
Howardena Pindell
00:46:43
In episode 54 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the LEGENDARY artist Howardena Pindell !!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Working across a variety of mediums, from painting to film, and who has employed a range of unconventional materials, such as glitter to talcum powder; since the late 1960s, Howardena Pindell has examined a wide range of subject matter, from the personal, historical, political and social for her highly important and activistic like work that deals with racism, feminism, violence and exploitation. Born in 1943 in Philadelphia, Pindell first studied painting at Boston University and later Yale University, and upon graduating, accepted a job in the Department of Prints and Illustrated Books at the Museum of Modern Art, where she remained for 12 years, from 1967 to 1979. A co-founder of the pioneering feminist A.I.R Gallery, Pindell is also a professor at the State University of New York, Stony Brook, where she has been since 1979.  Renowned early works include her mesmeric and labour intensive, pointillist paintings of the 1970s, created by spraying paint through a template, and Free, White and 21, a video made in 1980 in which the artist plays herself and, wearing a mask, a white woman, whose conversation relays Pindell’s own experiences of racism, which was first shown at artist Ana Mendieta’s curated exhibition at AIR in 1980.  Currently the subject of a major exhibition right now at New York’s The Shed, a show examining the violent, historical trauma of racism in America and the therapeutic power of artistic creation, other recent museum solo exhibitions have included at the MCA Chicago, Rose Museum, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, as well as an upcoming exhibition at Kettle’s Yard in Cambridge.  Pindell has also featured in recent landmark group exhibitions such as the touring Soul of a Nation: Art in the age of Black Power, We Wanted a Revolution: Black Radical Women, 1965–1985 at the Brooklyn Museum, and WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution, at LACMA. Among many many others.  Addressing important subjects that continue to educate people around the world, when asked about her viewers Howardena recently said in an interview, “I want them to look at the hidden history instead of the history we were taught”. And that is why we are so lucky to have her work out on the world stage, and I couldn't be more delighted to be speaking with her today. ENJOY!!! FURTHER LINKS! https://www.howardenapindell.org/https://theshed.org/program/143-howardena-pindell-rope-fire-water https://mcachicago.org/Exhibitions/2018/Howardena-Pindell https://www.garthgreenan.com/artists/howardena-pindell https://www.victoria-miro.com/artists/216-howardena-pindell/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Laura Hendry  Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Mar 03, 2021
Elizabeth Smith on Helen Frankenthaler
00:48:40
WELCOME BACK TO SEASON 5 of the GWA PODCAST! In episode 53 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the renowned curator and executive director of the Helen Frankenthaler Foundation, Elizabeth Smith, on the trailblazing and legendary HELEN FRANKENTHALER (1928–2011) !!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] With a career spanning six decades, Helen Frankenthaler has long been recognized as one of the great American artists of the twentieth century. A member of the second generation of postwar American abstract painters, she is widely credited with playing a pivotal role in the transition from Abstract Expressionism to Color Field painting. Through her invention of the soak-stain technique, she expanded the possibilities of abstraction, while at times referencing figuration and landscape in highly personal ways. She produced a body of work whose impact on contemporary art has been profound and continues to grow. Born on December 12, 1928, and raised in New York. She attended the Dalton School, where she received her earliest art instruction from Rufino Tamayo. In 1949 she graduated from Bennington College, and by the early 1950s had entered into the Downtown New York Art Scene. Exhibiting at the infamous Ninth Street Show in 1951 (alongside Krasner, Mitchell, and others), Frankenthaler's breakthrough came in 1952 when she created Mountains and Sea, her first soak-stain painting. She poured thinned paint directly onto raw, unprimed canvas laid on the studio floor, working from all sides to create floating fields of translucent colour. The work catalysed the Colour Field School and was particularly influential for artists of her generation. In 1959, Frankenthaler had won first prize at the Premiere Biennale de Paris, by 1960 had her first major solo exhibition at the Jewish Museum in New York, and by 1969 was one of four artists to represent America at the Venice Biennale. Oh! AND she had a Whitney Museum solo exhibition of the same year. She was invisible. I LOVED recording this episode with Elizabeth Smith about the fascinating life and work of Frankenthaler. ENJOY!!! Works discussed: Nature Abhors a Vacuum, 1973 Cloud Burst, 2002 Pink Lady, 1963 Mountains and Sea, 1952 Jacob's Ladder, 1957 Flood, 1967 FURTHER LINKS! https://www.frankenthalerfoundation.org/artworks/paintings https://www.dulwichpicturegallery.org.uk/whats-on/exhibitions/2021/may/helen-frankenthaler-radical-beauty/ https://www.guggenheim.org/artwork/artist/Helen-Frankenthaler https://www.tate.org.uk/visit/tate-modern/display/studio/helen-frankenthaler https://gagosian.com/news/museum-exhibitions/pittura-panorama-paintings-by-helen-frankenthaler-museo-di-palazzo-grimani-venice/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Laura Hendry Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Feb 24, 2021
Rebecca VanDiver on Lois Mailou Jones
00:50:56
In episode 52 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the renowned art historian Rebecca K. VanDiver on the trailblazing and legendary LOIS MAILOU JONES (1905–1998) !!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Born in Boston, had her first exhibition aged 17, and found herself in the midst of the Harlem Renaissance in the 1920s, Lois Mailou Jones had an EXTENSIVE artistic career that spanned almost an entire century, and an oeuvre that ranged from traditional portraits, Haitian landscapes, to African-themed abstraction. Born to accomplished, upper-middle-class, professional parents in Boston, Jones spent her early years surrounded by the cultural elite on the island of Martha’s Vineyard, including sculptor Meta Warwick Fuller, a mentor to the young Jones and encouraging her to study in Paris. Continuously awarded scholarships to the School of the Museum of Fine Arts associated with the Boston Museum, the always highly determined Jones originally pursued textiles (however soon retracted after finding out that designers’ names weren’t recognised in the same as painters). An educator for nearly 50 years, she first got a job at PalmerMemorial School (which she would drive down to in her sports car, as well as coach basketball!), and in 1930 was personally recruited to teach at Howard University, the epicentre of Black intellectualism (her students included Elizabeth Catlett, and painter Alma Thomas was her neighbour in DC!). Spending many summers of the 1920s immersed in the Harlem Renaissance, between 1937–8 Jones ventured to Paris on sabbatical, where she adopted an impressionist-like style, painting ‘en plein air’. Like so many of her contemporaries of the Harlem Renaissance, Jones felt welcome as an artist in Paris. Developing her negotiations with African themes in her work, such as Les Fetiches, 1937, a small painting of African masks, it was on her return to America that she was encouraged by Harlem Renaissance gatekeeper, Alain Locke, to further embrace the everyday life of African American people. Honoured by numerous presidents, granted a Lois Mailou Jones Day AND Avenue in America, it wasn't until her elderly age that she took America by storm. And WOW. Has she had an impact on American art. ENJOY!!!! Rebecca K Vandiver is a RENOWNED scholar, and has just written a book on LMJ! See here: https://www.waterstones.com/book/designing-a-new-tradition/rebecca-vandiver//9780271086040 FURTHER LINKS! https://www.rebeccavandiver.com/ https://americanart.si.edu/artist/lo%C3%AFs-mailou-jones-5658 https://nmwa.org/art/artists/lois-mailou-jones/ https://hyperallergic.com/600201/lois-mailou-jones-an-artist-and-educator-who-made-history/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Laura Hendry  Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Dec 09, 2020
Polly Nor
00:46:06
In episode 51 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the incredible London-based illustrator and artist, POLLY NOR! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Best known for her dark and satirical drawings of women and their demons, Polly’s work interweaves themes of identity, sexuality, and emotional turmoil in her bold, bright, hilarious and disturbing semi-surrealist dream-like work. Looking at sexuality and the female experience in the internet age, Polly’s incredibly imaginative drawings tell the story of often house-bound women and their demons in the form of an all-consuming devil-like character that appear in her hand-drawn and digital illustrations, sculptures and installations. Creating worlds around them – whether that be from their bedrooms to the bottom of the sea – Polly’s all-consuming drawings have the ability to transport us to the deepest part of our minds, that feel more relatable than work found in any museums.  Although graduating in 2011, Polly’s rise to fame has been predominantly online, having amassed over one million followers on Instagram with her art inspiring a generation of illustrators worldwide who are breaking taboos around the female experience.  Having had numerous solo shows, as well as creating extraordinarily brilliant animations for Chelou’s Half to Nowhere video – genuinely the most incredible music video I have ever seen – and now narrative-based animations with director Andy Baker for WeTransfer, Polly’s characters, who are based on real, non-judgmental women going about their private life, are some of the most fascinating, complex, real, hilarious, I have ever witnessed in my life, and that is why I am so excited to say that she is the artist who we will be speaking to today! FURTHER LINKS: Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/pollynor Works discussed: https://www.instagram.com/p/CDtqUpYD0jX/ https://www.instagram.com/p/CA5eYTkjuMO/ https://www.instagram.com/p/BzOxN7bl9hH/ https://www.instagram.com/p/CGr7Gu8DxXN/ https://www.instagram.com/p/CF7zWDLj_EX/ Chelou music video:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BgP9tzt9_Z8 Latest animation, 'How Have You Been?':  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rjVCVdx8kKk&has_verified=1 Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Laura Hendry (@lghendry) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Dec 02, 2020
Griselda Pollock on Alina Szapocznikow
00:55:50
In episode 50 (!!!) of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the legendary, trailblazing, feminist art history ICON, GRISELDA POLLOCK on the pioneering Polish Jewish artist, Alina Szapocznikow.  [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Author, editor, curator, and Professor, Griselda Pollock's 43-year-plus career as an art historian is nothing short of LEGENDARY. Having co-authored (with Rozsika Parker), “Old Mistresses: Women, Art and Ideology”, written 26 books, and edited many more, Pollock's indefatigable career has seen her spend decades developing an international, queer, postcolonial, feminist analysis of art’s diverse histories. Writing extensively on artists Eva Hesse, Lubaina Himid, Georgia O’Keeffe, to Tracey Emin, Pollock has curated numerous museum exhibitions, made several films, and has two forthcoming publications out for release.  But the reason why we are speaking to Griselda today is because as well as being a social and feminist historian of  19th and 20th century and contemporary art she is also a transdisciplinary cultural analyst focussing in Cultural Studies and Jewish studies, which is where her fantastic, tireless work on the great sculptor, Alina Szapocznikow comes into play. Born in Poland to an intellectual Jewish family of doctors in 1926, Alina Szapocznikow survived internment in concentration camps during the Holocaust as a teenager. [TW: we discuss The Holocaust]. At her liberation in 1945, she moved first to Prague, and then to Paris, where she studied sculpture and took up a job at a stonemasons, and then was forced back to Poland in 1951 after suffering from tuberculosis. When the Polish government loosened controls over creative freedom following Stalin’s death in 1952, Szapocznikow moved into figurative abstraction and then a pioneering form of representation. By the 1960s, she was radically re-conceptualizing sculpture as an intimate record not only of her memory, but also of her own body. First casting parts of the body as fragments, on her return to Paris as part of 'Nouveau Realisme', she began to move into casting bulbous shapes cast in resin from human bellies, lipstick red lips, nipples and lips growing from slender stems like flowers and serving as lamps. Surrounded by an artistic community that included Niki de Saint Phalle and more, in this episode we discuss Szapocznikow's incredible life and career, her involvement in the evolution of new materials and new ways of thinking, whilst simultaneously trying to deal with the horrors of the past – as with her American contemporaries, Eva Hesse, Louise Bourgeois, and Hannah Wilke.  AS's Self Portrait: https://hammer.ucla.edu/exhibitions/2012/alina-szapocznikow-sculpture-undone-1955-1972 Photosculptures (chewing gum): https://hammer.ucla.edu/exhibitions/2012/alina-szapocznikow-sculpture-undone-1955-1972 Lamp works: https://hammer.ucla.edu/exhibitions/2012/alina-szapocznikow-sculpture-undone-1955-1972 Tumour series: https://hammer.ucla.edu/exhibitions/2012/alina-szapocznikow-sculpture-undone-1955-1972 Further images and information: https://www.hauserwirth.com/artists/16711-alina-szapocznikow?modal=media-player&mediaType=artwork&mediaId=16719 Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Laura Hendry  Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Nov 25, 2020
Mona Chalabi
00:49:22
In episode 49 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the incredible data journalist and artist, MONA CHALABI!!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Currently the Data editor of the Guardian US, a position she has held for the past seven years, the London-born but now New York-based Chalabi is known for her outstanding data-informed visualisations and drawings that range from addressing stats around gender imbalances in museums, to hate crimes and immigration issues to what time of day Americans might eat pizza. Bold, full of colour, and often hand-drawn directly onto graph or square paper, it is with humour and wit that Chalabi pushes boundaries to challenge societal assumptions and habits that have come to affect the way we live and think.  Having exhibited at the Tate, Design Museum, the V&A Glasgow and more, and created illustrations for the New Yorker, New York Review of Books, Netflix – as well as to her 400,000+ strong Instagram following, where you can find so much of her work – Chalabi has also written and presented for the BBC, National Geographic, Channel 4 and VICE, and was nominated for an Emmy for her video series Vagina Dispatches for the Guardian.  Commended by the Royal Statistical society, nominated for a Beazley Design of the Year award, and a former columnist for Five Thirty Eight called Dear Mona, Chalabi is translating spreadsheets into written pieces, illustration, audio and film for the modern-day consumer, allowing us all to enjoy, interact with her reliable data sources, as she breaks down the wall between complex information, art and illustration.  And on a personal level, it has been this year more than ever, with the current Coronavirus pandemic, Black Lives Matter Movement and the American election, that Mona’s data-informed works have resonated with people around the world. By using the power of art and illustration, she has allowed us to consume complex information in ways that I never thought possible.  WORKS + CHART DISCUSSED IN THE EPISODE! MONA'S INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/monachalabi/ MONA'S WEBSITE: https://monachalabi.com/ Trump's Federal Income Tax: https://www.instagram.com/p/CFr6e73lkK6/ Mandatory paid vacation: https://www.instagram.com/p/CE1kpM5FhWR/ Rectal bleeding: https://www.instagram.com/p/Bc-WtaRF-zg/ Mark Zuckerberg's donation to Coronavirus: https://www.instagram.com/p/B-StLvnFtOE/  Museum statistics: https://www.instagram.com/p/BxGBMU7HuUh/ 100 New Yorkers: https://www.instagram.com/p/CBTKeNNl4NZ/ US Police Training: https://www.instagram.com/p/CBLWZM8lmUL/ Understanding Police Brutality: https://www.instagram.com/p/CAz86y0FYqM/ Breonna Taylor: https://www.instagram.com/p/CFh6Uu1Fpn8/ Active KKK Groups: https://www.instagram.com/p/BYMAj-xFJOf/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Laura Hendry  Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Nov 18, 2020
Letizia Treves on Artemisia Gentileschi
00:52:28
In episode 48 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the highly esteemed National Gallery curator, Letizia Treves, on the REVOLUTIONARY Baroque artist, Artemisia Gentileschi !!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] And WOW, it was on the eve of lockdown that Letizia (the show's curator) took me for a tour of "Artemisia" at the National Gallery, where we recorded this very special episode – so please come and join us!  An ICON of art history. A trailblazer. A revolutionary. And a great. Born on the cusp of the Baroque era in 1593, Artemisia Gentileschi is one of history's most famous artists, known for her STRIKING large-scale and monumental canvases of Biblical heroines, from Susanna, Judith to the Mary Magdalene.  The ultimate 17th century Baroque artist – whose exhibition marks the first EVER by a female artist on this scale at the National Gallery – never before has a show given such an incredibly well-rounded and triumphant stance to an artist. Not only do we hear from the artist herself through her many letters (to both her lovers and "illustrious patrons"), but we also hear from her through a 400 year-old transcript covering her rape trial. A document that asserts the young 17 year-old, who despite overcoming enormous amounts of personal and professional setbacks, asserts herself as a strong, courageous, dignified woman.  This exhibition of thirty DAZZLING works starts with Susanna and the Elders, made when Artemisia was still working in her father, Orazio's studio. We then move into Florence, where she moved in 1612 and became the star of the city – gaining patronage from the likes of the Medici Court. Portraying Judith Beheading Holofernes as if she were butchering a piece of meat, Artemisia was never afraid to show THEATRICALITY in her Baroque works, infused with psychological drama.  One of the greatest exhibitions I have ever witnessed, please join us as we tour this monumental show!! Artworks discussed:  Susanna and the Elders, 1610 Judith Beheading Holofernes, 1612–13 + 1620–21 Judith and Her Maidservant, 1612–13 Self Portrait as Saint Catherine of Alexandria, 1616 Self Portrait as a Lute Player, 1616–18 Portrait of Artemisia Gentileschi by Simon Vouet Mary Magdalene in Ecstasy, 1623 Judith and Her Maidservant, 1623 Susanna and the Elders, 1652 Self Portrait as the Allegory of Painting, 1638 FURTHER LINKS! https://www.nationalgallery.org.uk/exhibitions/artemisia Artemisia's rape trial:  https://www.nationalgallery.org.uk/exhibitions/artemisia/artemisias-rape-trial Judith Beheading Holofernes:  https://www.nationalgallery.org.uk/exhibitions/artemisia/judith-beheading-holofernes https://www.nationalgallery.org.uk/paintings/artemisia-gentileschi https://www.waterstones.com/book/artemisia/letizia-treves/sheila-barker/9781857096569 https://www.nationalgallery.org.uk/artists/artemisia-gentileschi Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Laura Hendry  Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Nov 11, 2020
Alyce Mahon on Leonor Fini
00:54:09
In episode 47 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the highly esteemed, Cambridge University Art History professor and Surrealist EXPERT, Alyce Mahon on the magical LEONOR FINI (1907–1996) !!!!  [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] The MATRIARCH of 20th century painting, known for her highly original works of supernatural portraits that empowered her female protagonists in the forms of sphinxes, Fini switched up gender roles like no other and was one of the most ground-breaking painters of the twentieth century. Born in Buenos Aires of mixed Spanish, Italian, and Argentine descent, Leonor escaped Argentina when she was 18 months old with her young mother, who raised her in Trieste where she was exposed to Mannerist and Renaissance painting, and her uncle's library where she read Freud and Jung. Fini, although known for her meticulously executed paintings, was completely self-taught.  With her intelligence, famous wit and charisma, she had garnered celebrity status in the Paris Avant Garde by the early 30s, and was exhibiting in the major surrealist exhibitions. But it was her portraits made in the late 30s and images of women in the forms of sphinxes that garnered her attention.  With the predominant themes in her art being sexual tensions, mysteries and games, her favoured subjects explored the interplay between the dominant female and the passive male. In many of her most powerful works the female takes the form of the sphinx to which she felt a strong identification. Whilst many of her peers ventured to New York and Mexico after World War II, Fini moved first to Rome and then back to Paris where she became an acclaimed set and costume designer for the likes of Fellini's film, Eight and a Half, and designed dresses and masquerades for Brigitte Bardot. WORKS DISCUSSED:  Self Portrait with a Scorpion (1938) Portrait of Meret Oppenheim (1938) The Alcove: An Interior with Three Women or The Black Room (1939) The Alcove/Self Portrait with Nico Papatakis (1941) Little Hermit Sphinx (Tate Collection) (1948) The Angel of Anatomy (1949) FURTHER LINKS! Alyce's fantastic exhibition: https://www.museumofsex.com/portfolio_page/leonor-fini/ Alyce's book! https://press.princeton.edu/books/hardcover/9780691141619/the-marquis-de-sade-and-the-avant-garde (use the code MAHON20 for 25% off!) https://www.weinstein.com/artists/leonor-fini/ https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artists/leonor-fini-5287 Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Laura Hendry  Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Nov 04, 2020
Guerrilla Girls
00:48:03
To mark the FIVE YEAR ANNIVERSARY of @thegreatwomenartists Instagram, in this very special episode, Katy Hessel interviews the trailblazing, fearless, ICONS Kathë Kollwitz and Frida Kahlo of the GUERRILLA GIRLS !!!!!  [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] I don’t think I have ever been so excited! The anonymous feminist activist artist collective founded in 1985, who go by the guises of deceased female artists, the Guerrilla Girls are known to wear masks in public and use facts, humour, and outrageous and bold visuals to expose gender and ethnic bias in art, film, politics and in pop culture.  Working tirelessly for the past 35 years, the Guerrilla Girls have constantly fought discrimination and supported human rights for all people and all genders through their data-based artwork, which has been exhibited on buses, billboards, some of the biggest museums in the world – from the Tate to the Whitney – but also our very own bedrooms, including my own, with their aim being to spread equality and action through more than ninety posters, mugs, tea-towels, workbooks and more. Best known for their outrageous and witty statements including, “do women have to be naked to get into the met museum”, or “the advantages of being a woman artist”, it is through humour, bold graphics and data that the Guerrilla Girls catch our attention, and leave us wondering how just did museums get away with celebrating the history of patriarchy, as opposed to the history of art.  The most inspiring, encouraging, educational and unfortunately very needed artist collective out there, the Guerrilla Girls have changed – and are still changing – the story of art, one stunt at a time. I have been lucky enough to be the owner of much of their merchandise, and am delighted to say that they have just brought out a staggering new book,  The Guerrilla Girls: The Art of Behaving Badly, the first publication to catalog the entire career of the Guerrilla Girls from 1985 to present. ENJOY!!!!! FURTHER LINKS! https://www.guerrillagirls.com/ New book! https://www.guerrillagirls.com/store/the-art-of-behaving-badly Projects! https://www.guerrillagirls.com/projects Exhibitions! https://www.guerrillagirls.com/exhibitionshttps://www.tate.org.uk/art/artists/guerrilla-girls-6858 Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Oct 28, 2020
Cecily Brown
00:52:24
In episode 45 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the greatest painters to ever live, the inimitable CECILY BROWN!!!!!   [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] I am SO EXCITED to release this episode which chronicles the UK-born, US-based Brown's incredible painterly career from the 1990s–present day! With her work steeped in art history, referencing the likes of Rubens, to Goya to Bacon and de Kooning, Cecily Brown is known for her all-encompassing, small-to-colossal scale paintings that portray the medium in a continual state of flux, constantly blurring the lines between abstraction and figuration, truth and fiction, liquid and solid.   Always ALIVE with erotic energy, witnessing a Cecily Brown in the flesh is like seeing four-hundred years worth of painting unfold before your eyes. Every corner and inch of the canvas is activated, frenzied and fractured so intensely that you can’t help but project ideas around desire, life, and death, with the painting’s momentous fleshy and battle-like strokes and tones.  Born in the UK in the late 1960s, Cecily Brown was granted a garage to paint by the esteemed British painter (and former GWA Podcast guest) Maggi Hambling, before going on to study at London’s Slade School of Fine Art. And in 1994, after a stint in America two years before, she relocated to New York City, where she has lived ever since, continuing the legacy of the renowned New York School artists.  The subject of solo exhibitions at major institutions around the world, including the MFA Boston, Hirshhorn in Washington, Modern Art Oxford, and my favourite Louisiana Museum in Denmark, as well as countless shows at galleries including Thomas Dane and Paula Cooper, where I have been lucky enough to witness her work, Cecily is considered one of the most influential painters alive right now.  And NOW she has recently opened a staggeringly brilliant exhibition at Blenheim Palace here in England, where she has conceived an entirely new body of work that responds to the Palace’s history, through hunting and battle scenes, as well as a brilliant commentary on the state of Britain right now and the romanticised but complex nature of British society.  FURTHER LINKS! https://www.blenheimpalace.com/whats-on/events/cecily-brown-art-exhibition/ All the Nightmares Came Today, 2012: https://www.artspace.com/cecily_brown/all-the-nightmares-came-today Current exhibition at Paula Cooper Gallery: https://www.paulacoopergallery.com/exhibitions/cecily-brown-2020-10-15/selected-works Louisiana show: https://louisiana.master.re-cph.dk/en/exhibition/cecily-brown https://channel.louisiana.dk/video/cecily-brown-totally-unaware Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Oct 20, 2020
Wanda M Corn on Georgia O'Keeffe
00:54:22
In episode 44 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the highly esteemed, pioneering art historian, Wanda M Corn on the legendary painter, GEORGIA O'KEEFFE (1887–1986) !!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] I am SO EXCITED to release this episode with Wanda Corn who not only **KNEW** Georgia O'Keeffe in the 1980s, but who is the curator of the staggeringly brilliant and HIGHLY successful exhibition, Georgia O’Keeffe: Living Modern at New York’s The Brooklyn Museum in 2017, which toured around the US. This was an exhibition that looked at how the renowned modernist artist proclaimed her progressive, independent lifestyle through a self-crafted person – from the way she dressed to how she posed for photographs – expanding our understanding of who O’Keeffe was, and her determination to be in charge of how the world understood her identity and artistic values.  The ICON of American painting Georgia O'Keeffe is one of the greatest artists to ever live. Known for her incredibly rendered paintings of magnified flowers, American skyscrapers, to skulls and landscapes evocative of the dry New Mexican landscape in which she lived, O'Keeffe captured the most serene works that didn't just reflect the world around her, but the evolution of modernism in the 20th century. No one captured nature in its many forms like O'Keeffe. Learning to paint at the turn of the 1900s, O'Keeffe transformed traditional subjects – the landscape and still life – into a modernist language. After venturing to the deep Southwest in 1929, it was through painting that she documented the starkness and alien-ness of a place that had so rarely been recorded in oil paint.  Wanda Corn is a former Professor at Stanford University, and a LEADING scholar of late 19th and early 20th century American art and photography. A writer, curator, editor and lecturer, Wanda has received countless awards and fellowships for her tireless work to art history over the past few decades! And is the MOST enthusiastic and engaging speaker. THANK YOU WANDA!! FURTHER LINKS! The book of the show! https://prestelpublishing.randomhouse.de/book/Georgia-OKeeffe/Wanda-Corn/Prestel-com/e516673.rhd A video of Wanda's exhibition: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zTYqxARzOlchttps://www.brooklynmuseum.org/exhibitions/touring/georgia_okeeffe_living_modern https://www.waterstones.com/book/the-great-american-thing/wanda-m-corn/9780520231993 https://www.okeeffemuseum.org/ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=quG3EHonOns https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5v8E7460eTU Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Oct 13, 2020
Toyin Ojih Odutola
00:55:26
In episode 43 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the most incredible artists working in the world right now, the brilliant TOYIN OJIH ODUTOLA. [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Working exclusively in drawing materials including pen, pastel, charcoal, and chalk, the Nigerian-born and New York-based artist is known for her astoundingly-beautiful, electric-like and meticulously rendered figurative works. Based on imaginary characters who inhabit opulent interiors and verdant landscapes, Ojih Odutola’s work can be exclusively monochrome or drenched in dazzling colours. With her starting point being not the pen, but rather her mind, she begins each series by creating narratives that play out through a series of works that suggest the structure of episodes or chapters, in their cinematic-like ways. As viewers, these sometimes-immersive series leave you physically and psychologically transported into other worlds as they probe questions about the state of our current world through their presentations of alternative histories, with the artist herself joining the story as she takes up fictional roles including a private secretary, or the director of a research initiative. A 2017 exhibition, To Wander Determined at The Whitney Museum in New York, which I was lucky enough to witness, presented an interconnected series of fictional portraits chronicling the lives of two aristocratic Nigerian families, and her most recent exhibition, A Countervailing Theory at London’s Barbican Centre, tells the story of an ancient civilisation ruled by female warriors (the Eshu) and served by male labourers (the Koba). Referencing ancient history, popular culture, anime, fan-fiction, to contemporary politics, Toyin is reinterpreting the artistic landscape like no other. By playing with traditions of portraiture, she is pushing the genre beyond its roots into the realm to the psychological, the speculative and the seemingly impossible. And it is her most recent exhibition, A Countervailing Theory, which features a staggering cycle of forty new large-scale drawings that explore the complexities of our system, and challenge established norms!!!! WOW. I am completely blown away by Toyin Ojih Odutola in this episode. PLEASE LISTEN !!!! and thank you :) FURTHER LINKS: https://www.barbican.org.uk/whats-on/2020/event/toyin-ojih-odutola-a-countervailing-theory https://www.npg.org.uk/blog/zadie-smith-and-toyin-ojih-odutola https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2020/08/17/toyin-ojih-odutolas-visions-of-power https://jackshainman.com/artists/toyin_ojih_odutola https://whitney.org/exhibitions/toyinojihodutola Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Oct 06, 2020
Chloe Wise
00:50:17
In episode 42 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the sensational painter, CHLOE WISE!!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Canada-born and now NYC-based, Chloe Wise captures the strange times we are living more poignantly – and sometimes disturbingly – more than any artist I know!!  Working in a range of materials, from beautifully-rendered painting, to sculpture, video and installation, Wise’s works are filled with portraits of her friends and acquaintances, food, and everyday objects that pay particular attention to our consumer-culture-obsessed and hyper-sanitised world. Perfectly rendered with an almost airbrush-like quality, Chloe’s paintings in particular comment on how advertising, fashion, and multinational brands feed into our everyday lives. By incorporating these well-known symbols and logos into her work, she makes us question not only our everyday need to consume, but our obsession with portraying an outwardly perfect version of ourself, which is why another side of her work (the videos!) are such a great antidote to her painting, as it shows us an awkward truth of the world: unsanitized, airbrushed, and often set up in an anonymous office-like environment. Steeped in the history of art and the history of portraiture with their triangular forms, large group scenes emulating a Biblical or historical narrative, use of drapery evocative of Botticelli or Bernini, and hands connecting the emotion of each figure, it is with a wry sense of humour that Wise nods to the canon which explore the shared projected desires built around food and the female body.  ENJOY!! This is one of the funnest, most interesting, and THOUGHT PROVOKING episodes of the GWA Podcast. We discuss everything from her painting to living in Trump's America to our mass-consumed world, and of course our love for ALICE NEEL! Further links:  https://www.chloewise.com/ https://www.alminerech.com/artists/3760-chloe-wise https://alminerech.viewingrooms.com/viewing-room/11-chloe-wise-second-nature/ This episode is sponsored by Alighieri https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Sep 29, 2020
Tracey Bashkoff on Hilma af Klint
00:56:34
WELCOME BACK TO SEASON 4!! In episode 41 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the world-renowned, Guggenheim curator and Director of Collections, Tracey Bashkoff on the staggeringly PIONEERING... HILMA AF KLINT!!!  [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] And WOW. What an INSIGHT into one of the world's greatest and innovative artists: who experimented with Abstraction BEFORE the likes of Kandinsky and Mondrian, but whose paintings (who no one knew she was making!) were not discovered until 20+ years after the artist's death in 1944.  Guided by a spirit, Hilma af Klint created mesmerising, and colossal-scale work that documented the evolution of life and the world. Not telling anyone except her Spiritualist circle that she was making these (bar the Theosophist, Rudolph Steiner, who may or may not have tipped people off!!! Listen for more!), Hilma af Klint painted her series "Paintings for the Temple" (100s of paintings in just two years!) which she envisioned to be one day housed in a 'round, spiral-like temple' (!!!), which feels scarily like the actual Guggenheim....!!! And wow has she had a resurgence. Between the years 2018–2019, Tracey Bashkoff curated the most successful exhibition the Guggenheim has ever seen. An exhibition that not only stunned the world and disrupted art history for ever, but saw a record number of visitors attend (over 600,000 nearly double that of the previous year’s Giacometti show), forced the museum to extend their evening hours and be open seven days a week despite the show running for a staggering six months! This show was of course, "Hilma Af Klint: Paintings for the Future", a groundbreaking exhibition that filled every corner of the gallery by the little-known Swedish artist, whose first ever US solo exhibition it was, held 75 years after her death. ENJOY! This is genuinely the most fascinating story of an artist I have EVER witnessed! Further information: https://www.guggenheim.org/video/hilma-af-klint https://www.guggenheim.org/blogs/checklist/who-was-hilma-af-klint-at-the-guggenheim-paintings-by-an-artist-ahead-of-her-time  https://www.guggenheim.org/blogs/checklist/guggenheim-curators-answer-questions-about-hilma-af-klint https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/11/arts/design/hilma-af-klint-review-guggenheim.html  https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/10/22/hilma-af-klints-visionary-paintings This episode is sponsored by Alighieri https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Sep 22, 2020
Melanie Herzog on Elizabeth Catlett
00:50:25
In episode 40 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the world-renowned art historian, Dr Melanie Herzog on the TRAILBLAZING American artist, ELIZABETH CATLETT (1915–2012). [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] And WOW! This was such an insight into one of the MOST seminal artists (teacher, pioneer, and PERSON!) who lived throughout almost the entirety of the 20th century, and whose aim in her art was to tell stories, fight for justice, and make art accessible to ALL!!! "I have always wanted my art to service my people—to reflect us, to relate to us, to stimulate us, to make us aware of our potential.” Elizabeth Catlett was known for her powerful sculptures, paintings, and prints that explored themes around race, feminism, and SOCIAL JUSTICE! Born in DC, Catlett attended the ESTEEMED Howard University in the 30s under the legend who was Lois Mailou Jones, before completing her MFA at Iowa under the American artist Grant Wood who inspired her to "take as your subjects what you know best" ! She became instrumental in the Harlem Renaissance, before moving to Mexico in 1946, where she became heavily involved in political movements and joined the radical artists' collective called "Taller de Gráfica Popular". She remained in Mexico for the rest of her life, and only came back to the USA once for her major Studio Museum in Harlem exhibition. The grandchild of freed slaves, Catlett was instrumental in pioneering a style that merged abstraction and figuration in a Modernist aesthetic – curvaceous figures and features with thick sharp lines – whilst also bringing in influences from African and Mexican art traditions. Whilst alive (she passed in 2012 age 96) she divided her time between Mexico and the US which heavily informed her approach to form and printmaking. Catlett's artistic aim was to convey social messages through her heavily political work which saw her reflect the civil rights struggles in which she participated.  ENJOY!!! Further information! https://www.moma.org/collection/works/88189https://www.moma.org/collection/works/67108?sov_referrer=artist&artist_id=1037&page=1https://www.moma.org/collection/works/65050?sov_referrer=artist&artist_id=1037&page=1 This episode is sponsored by Alighieri https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Sep 01, 2020
Cornelia Parker
00:36:53
In episode 39 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the world-renowned British artist, CORNELIA PARKER !! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] And WOW! This was such an insight into one of Britain's foremost artists known for her inventive, poetic, and quietly provocative works in sculpture, photography, performance, prints, and large-scale, and often site-specific, installations. Working in a variety of mediums since the mid-1980s, Parker's art is about destruction, resurrection and reconfiguration. Demonstrating the importance of process, she frequently transforms objects by using seemingly violent techniques such as shooting, exploding, squashing, cutting and burning. And it is through these actions that she both physically alters the object, as well as becoming an active development of its story herself.  Having studied at Gloucestershire College of Art & Design and at Wolverhampton Polytechnic before receiving her MA in Fine Art from the University of Reading in 1982, Cornelia Parker has since gone on to capture audiences from around the world, shifting our idea of what art can be, and exploring every possible potential of materials. Shortlisted for the Turner Prize in 1997, made an OBE and a Royal Academician in 2010, as well as serving as the country’s Election Artist in 2017, Parker has exhibited all over the world, including the likes of the Metropolitan Museum in New York, London’s Hayward Gallery, Manchester’s Whitworth Gallery, Sydney’s Museum of Contemporary Art, as well as featuring in collections worldwide from the Tate, Royal Academy, Pompidou, and MoMA.  Further reading! https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artists/cornelia-parker-2358 https://cristearoberts.com/artists/25-cornelia-parker/ https://www.mca.com.au/artists-works/exhibitions/cornelia-parker/ https://www.royalacademy.org.uk/art-artists/name/cornelia-parker-ra ENJOY!!! This episode is sponsored by Alighieri https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Aug 25, 2020
Lou Stoppard on Shirley Baker
00:41:26
In episode 38 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the brilliant London-based writer LOU STOPPARD on the ICONIC and TRAILBLAZING street photographer SHIRLEY BAKER (1932–2014) !!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] And WOW! This was such an insight into one of the greatest street photographers of the 20th century. A woman who captured 6+ decades of change in post-War Britain: from Manchester in the ‘50s and ‘60s, to the heights of Thatcherism in the ‘80s, and New Labour in the 2000s. A self-proclaimed “idler with a camera”, the fearlessly socially and politically engaged Shirley saw beauty, character and absurdity in the everyday. Documenting those often overlooked or on the outside – much like the artist herself who wasn’t recognised with a major solo exhibition until right at the end of her life at The Photographer’s Gallery – Shirley captured unnamed people who shaped our cultures, as opposed to the places themselves. Highly sensitive to change and the ageing process, Shirley Baker was skilled at observing modernity, whether it be through the rise of industrialism and technology, altering eating habits, or the abandonment of terraced houses in the North between 1955–1973 (after the Housing Repairs and Rents Act), which were abruptly replaced by large looming tower blocks. Always on the frontline of change, she captured moments that felt still amongst a fast-paced world: "I did know that fundamental changes were taking place and nobody seemed to be interested in recording the face of the people or any- thing in their lives. My interest grew into a compulsion even though the notion of someone wandering the unpicturesque streets of Manchester and Salford with a camera seemed quite crazy to most people then." But she also captured the imperfections in people – people who tried to live up to society’s expectations with whom she caught moments when their mask slipped. Wow. So much to unpick here!!! I am in awe of Shirley and Lou's brilliant take on her. An INCREDIBLY aware photographer with a fascinating story which we discuss in depth! ENJOY!!! Further reading: Lou’s fantastic book! https://mackbooks.co.uk/products/shirley-baker-br-lou-stoppard-ed https://www.newyorker.com/culture/photo-booth/shirley-bakers-half-century-of-street-photography This episode is sponsored by Alighieri https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Aug 18, 2020
Bridget R Cooks on Alma Thomas
00:54:17
In episode 37 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the world-renowned art historian Bridget R Cooks on the SENSATIONAL and PIONEERING Abstract artist, ALMA THOMAS (1891–1978) !!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] And WOW. This is one of the most incredible and UPLIFTING life stories I have heard of an artist whose work I am completely in love with – partially for the reason that Alma Thomas did not become an artist until she was in her 70s!!! A schoolteacher from 1924–1960 (!), it wasn't until after retirement that Alma Thomas took up painting professionally. Enrolling in University as a senior, she quickly shot to fame and was the first Black woman to have a solo exhibition at the Whitney in 1972. She was a groundbreaker.  Known for her electric-like canvases, Alma Thomas transposed the way she saw the world onto the canvas through her shards of shimmering colour that represented flowers, music, science, to the first man landing on the moon and the invention of colour television. Some more muted than others, colour was Alma Thomas's lifeline: “A world without colour would seem dead. Colour, for me, is life” In this episode – one of my favourites EVER, as told by Bridget so eloquently – we discuss Alma Thomas's life in great detail – including a VERY sweet and personal story from Bridget; what made her choose to be an educator for nearly five decades; her involvement in the Civil Rights Movement despite not 'directly' addressing these issues in her work; her relevance today; looking at museums' role in promoting Black artists; and of course, Alma's global fame when none other than MICHELLE OBAMA acquired her work as the first Black woman artist in the White House Collection in 2015. This is a really beautiful, uplifting SUNNY episode. And I hope you enjoy it. WORKS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE! Iris, Tulips, Jonquils, Crocuses (1969) Arboretum Presents White Dogwood (1972) March on Washington (1963–4) Wind, Sunshine, and Flowers (1968) Blast Off (1970) Launch Pad (1970) Cherry Blossom Symphony (1973) Pond Spring Awakening (1972) Resurrection (White House – 1966) FURTHER READING:  https://nmwa.org/art/artists/alma-woodsey-thomas/ https://studiomuseum.org/exhibition/alma-thomas https://www.whitehousehistory.org/photos/resurrection-by-alma-thomas This episode is sponsored by Alighieri  https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off!  Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Aug 11, 2020
Loie Hollowell
00:44:51
In episode 36 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the sensational artist, LOIE HOLLOWELL!!!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] And WOW was it fascinating to hear all about the ideas behind Loie's MIND-BLOWING, electric-like paintings that abstract the body through fragments of geometric shapes. Always using a vibrant colour palette, her PULSATING and PSYCHEDELIC works explore themes around sexuality, birth, women's bodies, which we discuss in-depth! First appearing as highly textured two dimensional works, witness them in real life and her works evolve from flat geometric masterpieces into an almost sculptural sphere that at once give the illusion of expanding and contracting, merging and converging. Having only just given birth for the second time a matter of months ago – during a pandemic! – Loie created an incredible body of work titled "Going Soft" in reaction to this, which didn't just depict how the body changed, but how the mind absorbed everything happening... Having grown up in Northern California in the 80s and 90s and now based in Queens, New York, Loie still bases much of her work on her upbringing in the expansive West Coast land, as well as citing from her influencers Agnes Pelton and Georgia O'Keeffe. Through her works, Loie is reimagining the way we don’t just see, but experience women’s bodies in painting, and I hope you enjoy our discussion around this!! WORKS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE! Beacon (2018) A Gentle Meeting of the Tips (2018) Post Partum (2018) Birthing Dance (2018) Deep Tear (2020) Perspective from Above and Below (23 April 2020) Descent into Chaos (1 June 2020) Further reading:  https://www.pacegallery.com/artists/loie-hollowell/ https://www.pacegallery.com/online-exhibitions/loie-hollowell/ This episode is sponsored by Alighieri  https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off!  Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Aug 04, 2020
Natalie Lettner on Maria Lassnig
00:53:49
In episode 35 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the world-renowned art historian and biographer, Natalie Lettner, on the FASCINATING and BRILLIANT Austrian-born artist, MARIA LASSNIG (1919–2014) !!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] And WOW. This is one of the most interesting life stories I have ever heard of an artist whose work I am COMPLETELY blown away by. Known for her psychologically charged figurative paintings, Lassnig's work is based on the extreme observation of the physical presence of the body – what she termed ‘body awareness’.  Born in 1919, in a small town in southern Austria, Maria's mother gave birth to her out of wedlock and later married a much older man, but their troubled and tempestuous relationship meant Lassnig was raised by her grandmother, who hardly spoke to her since she was six. Studying at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna in the midst of the Second World War, where she was only exposed to classical and academic art, Lassnig quickly moved away from the state-approved academic realism and travelled around Europe in search of the avant-garde.  After experimenting with surrealism, abstraction, expressionism and constantly being treated lesser than her male counterparts, at age nearly 50 Lassnig moved on to NYC to join forces with the feminist movement. And it was here where her work turned to external realism and painted portraits, nudes and still lifes, at times combining these with her ‘body awareness’ self-portraits. Recording her psychological states through a direct and unflinching style, her work used garish greens, yellows and blues to giver her paintings a POWERFUL and DRASTIC impact.  Maria Lassnig painted like NO OTHER in the history of art. With such conviction, force, and lack of embarrassment. She was not afraid to reveal anything.  This is one of the most fascinating stories of an artist I have ever SEEN. An artist who almost predicted the influence of technology through her paintings (in the 80s she became obsessed with the machine, and addicted to television!!).  Please listen to this sensation of an episode with the brilliant Natalie who tells her story so well. Only to be recognised with a major exhibition at the age of 89 at the Serpentine Galleries.  WORKS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE! You, or Me (2005) Expressive Self Portrait (1945) Beams (1950) Head (1956) Self Portrait as a Monster (2005) Self Portrait with Stick (1971) Chain of Tradition My Teddy is more real than me (2002) Hospital (2005) Further reading:  https://www.hauserwirth.com/artists/2795-maria-lassnig https://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-liverpool/exhibition/maria-lassnig Natalie's brilliant book! https://www.abebooks.co.uk/Maria-Lassnig-Natalie-Lettner-Brandst%C3%A4tter-Verlag/22323627600/bd This episode is sponsored by Alighieri  https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off!  Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Jul 28, 2020
Somaya Critchlow
00:39:50
In episode 34 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the most exciting and brilliant young painters working in the world right now, the great SOMAYA CRITCHLOW!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] A graduate of Brighton University and The Royal Drawing School, Somaya is known for her powerful depictions of bold female characters and delicately rendered objects – that she creates on both a mid-size and minute scale! Challenging and subverting cultural expectations of race, gender, and power in the history of art, Somaya’s sometimes icon-like work adopts historical and classical motifs from the likes of Rubens to Velazquez. Although rooted in historical imagery, her works fuse traditional painting with the modern day, referencing film to hip hop, which she explores in depth through commenting on the cultural, class and political dynamics of contemporary society. In this episode we discuss painting the female nude, and challenging past perceptions and institutional norms; Somaya's interest in the work of feminist writer Angela Carter; subverting cultural expectations and what feminism means today; her early interest in objects and museums; film and television; as well as an in-depth exploration into her current INCREDIBLE solo exhibition, "Underneath a Bepop Moon" at Maximillian William (on view until 15 August!). ENJOY!!!! Further reading as discussed!!   https://maximillianwilliam.com/underneath-a-bebop-moon/ https://www.bl.uk/collection-items/typescript-draft-of-the-sadeian-woman-by-angela-carter https://www.theguardian.com/books/2012/sep/02/unmastered-desire-katherine-angel-review This episode is sponsored by Alighieri  https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off!  Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Jul 21, 2020
Lubaina Himid
01:18:41
In episode 33 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the most groundbreaking, important, and influential artists working in the world today, the Turner-Prize winning artist, LUBAINA HIMID!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] Known for working in painting, drawing, collage, printmaking, cut-outs, and installations, Himid paints onto a variety of surfaces from ceramic to wood which produce objects with performative potential intended to be encountered in a space.  A tireless champion of marginalised voices, Himid has dedicated her thirty-year-plus career to uncovering silenced histories, to valorise ‘the contribution Black people have made to cultural life in Europe for the past several hundred years’. Born in Zanzibar in 1954, Himid moved to Britain with her mother when she was just four months old. She studied Theatre Design at Wimbledon College of Art, and later Royal College of Art. In the 1980s, Lubaina became one of the LEADERS and TRAILBLAZERS of Britain’s Black Arts movement, curating three shows – which we disucss in depth. Living and work in Preston, she is a CBE, a Royal Academician, the winner of the 2017 Turner Prize, and a professor at the University of Central Lancashire; in the collection of the Tate, V&A, Whitworth, Walker Art Gallery, plus more; and has had solo exhibitions at the New Museum in New York, Tate St Ives, Chisenhale, and it has just been announced that Lubaina will have a major solo exhibition at Tate Modern in November 2021.  This is really one of the greatest conversations I have EVER had. I am completely in awe at Lubaina and her BRILLIANT work that remains more present than ever. I really hope you enjoy this episode. This episode is sponsored by Alighieri  https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off!  Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Jul 15, 2020
Julie Curtiss
00:44:08
In episode 32 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the phenomenal, Brooklyn-based artist, JULIE CURTISS!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] One of the MOST exciting artists working today, Julie is known for her bold, graphic, highly stylised and Neo-Surrealist works of faceless and fragmented women, and food. Often swept up in an eerily dreamscape, her often cropped works allow us as viewers to interpret a world beyond what we are looking at.  Working in a myriad of mediums including painting, sculpture, and gouache on paper, Julie focuses on the relationship between nature and culture, as well as exposing and reworking female archetypes through motifs of flowing hair, long nails, and high heels.  Speaking about her work she has said: "In my images, I enjoy the complementarity of humour and darkness, the uncanny and the mundane, grotesque shapes and vivid colours." Born and raised in Paris, Curtiss studied at l'Ėcole des Beaux-Arts before moving first to Japan and then to New York. She is known for referencing 18th and 19th century French painting, as well as fusing together the pop-like imagery the Chicago Imagists, reminiscent of comic books and advertising.  But in a similar manner to the Post-Impressionist painters, she mines her subjects from contemporary, everyday life, representing and exposing its curious, small details in cropped and ambiguous compositions that are erotically charged, cinematic and dreamlike in feel.  I LOVED this HIGHLY fascinating conversation with Julie. In this episode we speak about her INCREDIBLE paintings, as well as her introduction to art through posters, her upbringing in France vs life in America, advertising, Jeff Koons, obsession with technologies entering our life, darkness in cinema, FOOD, the post-war era of the housewife, the constant upkeep of appearances for women, and MANY MORE!! Further reading: https://whitecube.com/artists/artist/julie_curtiss https://antonkerngallery.com/artists/julie_curtiss ENJOY!! WORKS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE Lateral Embrace  Orlando  Double Selfie MoMA Guests Further reading:  http://www.houldsworth.co.uk/exhibition-thumbnails/little-is-enough-for-those-in-love-1579801608/1 https://www.goodman-gallery.com/artists/cassi-namoda This episode is sponsored by Alighieri  https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off!  Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Jul 07, 2020
Cassi Namoda
00:39:56
In episode 31 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the most exciting artists in the world right now, the great CASSI NAMODA!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] WOW was it incredible to speak with the painter known for her vibrant and beautiful works that capture everyday scenes – from mundane moments to life-changing events of post-colonial Mozambique within an increasingly globalised world. Born in Maputo, and currently based in Long Island, NY, Cassi is a painter and performance artist who explores the intricacies of social dynamics and mixed cultural and racial identity. With the appearance of film stills, these fleeting snapshots sit within much larger narratives, and range from bustling, faceless crowds to close-up individual portraits. When confronted with one, they fill you with JOY with their vibrant colours and scenes full of love and appreciation, with the artist once remarking, “If you’re surrounded by love and community, you can make do with very little." I LOVED speaking with Cassi. In this episode we discuss her most recent exhibition "Little Is Enough For Those in Love" at Pippy Houldsworth in London – a show bursting with vitality, as well as exploring dualities between joy and pain; the storytelling aspect of her work and its cinematic influence; her experience growing up across continents and her aim to portray a post-independence Mozambique. ENJOY!! WORKS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE 3 Month Old Lung Patient, 2019 Untitled (Conjoined Twins), 2019 Sad Man with Flowers, 2019 Little Is Enough For Those in Love, 2019 Costa Do Sol on Sunday Evening, 2019 Further reading:  http://www.houldsworth.co.uk/exhibition-thumbnails/little-is-enough-for-those-in-love-1579801608/1 https://www.goodman-gallery.com/artists/cassi-namoda This episode is sponsored by Alighieri  https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off!  Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Jun 30, 2020
Briony Fer on Eva Hesse
00:47:51
In episode 30 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the incredible art historian and curator, Professor Briony Fer, on the legendary EVA HESSE!! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] One of the most GROUNDBREAKING artists the world has ever seen, Eva Hesse was known for her innovative sculptures made up of synthetic materials from fibreglass, plastic, to latex.  Working predominantly in NYC in the 60s, despite a short-lived career, Eva worked rigorously and prolifically, challenging every sculptural convention which came before her. Particularly deconstructing the rigidity and uniformity of Minimalism.  A pioneering feminist artist, Hesse desired, in her own words, to “challenge the norms of beauty and order.” And that's exactly what she did. She explored the body and form, and painting and sculpture, like no one had before. She painted biomorphs with wonky grids, covered cheesecloths in latex, and celebrated materials for what they were in all their irregular glory.  Born to Jewish parents in Nazi Germany in 1936, Hesse's early life was traumatic. Where her extended family were horrifically transported to concentration camps, she, her sister and their parents fled to NYC, with her mother sadly committing suicide just a few years later. Hesse channelled her anxieties into her art making, studying under the likes of Josef Albers at Yale, and taking the NY art scene by storm when she was just in her late 20s and early 30s. Earning herself major solo exhibitions and critical acclaim at a time when female artists were widely overlooked, Hesse explored wonders before her premature death in 1970, aged just 34. She has since gone on to influence millions. This discussion with world-renowned art historian Briony Fer – an old tutor of mine from UCL!! – is one of my favourites ever. Briony speaks SO wonderfully about Eva and really goes into depth about who she was, and her fiercely experimental practice. I hope you enjoy!!! Highly recommend this fantastic documentary on Eva! https://www.evahessedoc.com/ WORKS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE: Accession https://www.dia.org/art/collection/object/accession-ii-47951 Schema  https://www.philamuseum.org/collections/permanent/72573.html?mulR=601651032 Drawings https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/hesse-untitled-t04154 Ringaround Arosie https://www.moma.org/collection/works/98638 Vertiginous Detour https://hirshhorn.tumblr.com/post/141099084095/eva-hesse-vertiginous-detour-1966-hesse-was-a Untitled or Not Yet https://www.sfmoma.org/artwork/97-513-a-i/ Hang Up https://www.artic.edu/artworks/71396/hang-up Right After https://womennart.com/2018/02/21/right-after-by-eva-hesse/ Repetition 19 https://www.moma.org/learn/moma_learning/eva-hesse-repetition-nineteen-iii-1968/ This episode is sponsored by Alighieri  https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off!  Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Jun 23, 2020
Helene Love-Allotey, Chloe Austin, Emi Eleode
01:07:00
In episode 29 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews THREE brilliant guests: African Art specialist, Helene Love-Allotey, art historian and curator-in-training Chloe Austin, and creator of @arthistorytalks, Emi Eleode.  Last week, six exciting young names in art celebrating Black culture took over @thegreatwomenartists Instagram account. To honour this takeover, this episode, as well as last week's, feature interviews with all six women about their practice and work.  And WOW. Were these women were absolutely incredible to speak with. First up we have Helene Love-Allotey who speaks in depth about her love for the great British artist, Lubaina Himid, and her experience visiting Himid's very moving and important exhibition "Meticulous Observations and Naming the Money". Housed at Liverpool's Walker Art Gallery, this show highlighted how Europe’s wealthy classes spent their money in the 19th century by using enslaved African men and women, which Himid awkwardly and unapologetically portrays in vibrant cut-out sculptures placed amongst the white and male-dominated permanent collection. See more:  https://www.artscouncilcollection.org.uk/exhibition/lubaina-himid-meticulous-observations-and-naming-money @helenaloveallotey Next up is the great Chloe Austin, a curator-in-training at London's Barbican Centre, and Institute of the International Visual Arts (Iniva), a radical visual arts organisation dedicated to developing an artistic programme that reflects on the social and political impact of globalisation, in which we speak at length about. We also discuss the institutions' position and reaction to this movement, as well as the three brilliant artists Deborah Findlater, Rosa-Johan Uddoh, and Elsa James.  See more: https://iniva.org/ https://iniva.org/programme/projects/chatting-in-the-stacks/ https://chloesinternalmonologue.wordpress.com/2020/06/06/black-boxes/ @chloejaaay  And we end with the wonderful Emi Eleode, founder of the Instagram @arthistorytalks, a page that spotlights 4–5 artists from a non-Western country each month. We discuss her own work that plays on art history, her research into the history of dance as a ritual in Brazil, as well as artists Delphine Diallo and Amrita Sher-Gil.  This is one of my favourite episodes EVER of The Great Women Artists Podcast so I hope you enjoy! This episode is sponsored by Alighieri  https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off!  Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Jun 16, 2020
Nengi Omuku, Alayo Akinkugbe, Michaela Yearwood-Dan
01:12:54
In episode 28 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews THREE brilliant guests: Lagos-based artist, Nengi Omuku, founder of @ablackhistoryofart Alayo Akinkugbe, and the amazing London-based artist, Michaela Yearwood-Dan. Over the past six days some of the most exciting young names in art celebrating Black culture have been taking over @thegreatwomenartists Instagram account. To honour this takeover, this episode, and the next one will feature interviews with all six women about their practice and work.  And WOW. Were these women completely incredible to speak with. We first speak to Nengi Omuku, the Slade BA and MA graduate whose work explores perceptions of race and gender, protest and notions of collective mourning, dealing with the coping mechanisms the body develops in order to be present. We speak at length about her aim to paint the mind capturing psychological notions in her sitters, as well as her interest in art as therapy. See more: http://www.nengiomuku.com/ + @nengiomuku    Works discussed: Funke, Nearing, Gathering, Male Next up is the great Alayo Akinkugbe, the 19 year-old History of Art student at Cambridge University who created the Instagram, @ablackhistoryofart which highlights overlooked artists, sitters, curators, and thinkers from history to the present day. We discuss Lynette Yiadom-Boakye, Faith Ringgold, as well as her participation in Decolonising Art History at Cambridge. See more: @ablackhistoryofart And wow, we end with the sensational, Michaela Yeawood-Dan. One of the MOST exciting and phenomenal young artists working in London right now, known for her incredibly beautiful, playful, vibrant and sometimes thick impastoed canvases that explore themes around class, culture, gender and nature. We speak about the artists' work and practice, in particular the text behind her work, and of course her love for the great Carrie Mae Weems. See more: http://michaelayearwood-dan.com/ + @artistandgal  This is one of my favourite episodes EVER of The Great Women Artists Podcast so I hope you enjoy! This episode is sponsored by Alighieri  https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off!  50% of ad revenue for this episode will be donated to the Stephen Lawrence Trust, Black Minds Matter, Black Lives Matter UK, and The Marsha P Johnson Institute.  Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Jun 10, 2020
Deborah Roberts
00:48:14
In Episode 27 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the phenomenal artist, DEBORAH ROBERTS!!  [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] The MOST entertaining guest, the Austin-born and based Deborah is known for combining collage with mixed media in her figurative works that depict the complexity of black subjecthood, and explore themes of race, identity, and gender politics.  By using collage, she reflects the beauty, strength, and power but also challenges encountered by young black children, as they strive to build their identity, particularly as they respond to preconceived social constructs perpetuated by the black community. "With collage I can create a more expansive and inclusive view of the black experience." Inspired by Wangechi Mutu and Hannah Höch, Roberts combines a range of different facial features – from James Baldwin to Rihanna – as well skin tones, hairstyles, and a myriad of vibrant outfits. One of the leading artists in America, being in the collections of the Whitney to SF MoMA, the ICA Boston, Studio Museum, Brooklyn Museum, it has only been in the past few years that Roberts has gained the recognition she rightly deserves. i LOVED recording this episode so much. Not only was Deborah hilarious and brilliant, but we also speak about the very serious and very present underlying matters in her work, and how, through art she is helping to rectify the portrayal of young children of colour in the media, and in history. Deborah is a genius, so please do enjoy this episode!!  FURTHER LINKS: Follow Deborah on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/rdeborah191/?hl=en https://www.stephenfriedman.com/artists/51-deborah-roberts/ https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/12/arts/design/deborah-roberts-artist-virus-austin.html This episode is sponsored by Alighieri  https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off!  Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
May 26, 2020
Flora Yukhnovich
00:40:18
In Episode 26 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the highly-acclaimed, sensation of a painter, FLORA YUKHNOVICH! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] And WOW was it an honour to interview Flora at her studio (the week before lockdown!) and discuss in-depth her INCREDIBLE works that adopt the language of the Rococo, reimagining the DYNAMISM of works by 18th century artists such as Tiepolo to Fragonard! Fusing high and low cultures through a filter of contemporary Cultural references, including film, food, and music videos – think Katy Perry to Niki Minaj! – Flora brings in painterly traditions in a more consciously feminine realm by featuring wisps of millennial pinks and purples. Variation is a driving force with mark making ranging from delicate flourishes through dramatic and gestural brushstrokes heightening the rhythmic sensuality that play that conjure up in her MASTERPIECES. Since graduating from City and Guilds in 2017, Flora has gone on to exhibited widely – including at the likes of Leeds Art Gallery, Parafin, Jerwood Gallery, as well as completing the Great Women Artists residency at Palazzo Monti (!) and has a current (now online!) exhibition at VICTORIA MIRO! Check it out:  https://www.victoria-miro.com/exhibitions/558/ In this episode we uncover Flora's meticulous process, her references, beginnings as an artist, and her love for the Rococo – as well as such an insight into its history. Wow.  We also discuss her experience living in Venice, where she visited the Tiepolos on a daily basis, and reimagined them in her masterpieces!!!  Flora is a GENIUS, and one of the most highly regarded young painters in the WORLD right now, so please do enjoy this episode!  This episode is sponsored by Alighieri  https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off!  Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
May 19, 2020
Olivia Laing on Chantal Joffe, Sarah Lucas and Ana Mendieta
00:50:55
In Episode 25 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the world-renowned writer and critic, OLIVIA LAING on Chantal Joffe, Sarah Lucas, and Ana Mendieta! [This episode is brought to you by Alighieri jewellery: www.alighieri.co.uk | use the code TGWA at checkout for 10% off!] And WOW. Was it an honour to interview Olivia: one of the greatest writers working today and the author of some of my favourite books: To The River, The Trip to Echo Spring, Crudo, and The Lonely City, which explores artists’ loneliness in New York City – the most powerful book I have ever read (http://olivialaing.co.uk/lonely-city). Just last month she published an outstanding – and very timely – collection of essays titled Funny Weather: Art in an Emergency, which features in-depth essays about artists’ lives, from Derek Jarman to Georgia O’Keeffe, love letters to the likes of David Bowie, plus her encounters and friendships with Chantal Joffe and Sarah Lucas! https://www.panmacmillan.com/authors/olivia-laing/funny-weather/9781529027648 SO, in this episode – a little different to previous ones – we talk to Olivia about her top three female artists, and wow did she speak eloquently, passionately, enthusiastically, and just brilliantly about these PIONEERING artists. We deep dive into her friendship with painter Chantal Joffe, whom Olivia has sat for on multiple occasions, and who she has also written about sitting for too! (Check out one of her essays here: https://www.theguardian.com/books/2018/may/12/chantal-joffe-paints-olivia-laing-mutual-portraits-words-and-paint) When asked about how Chantal captures people she says: "it's more that she sees a changing self. Every painting she does. It's very Virginia Woolf, the sense of somebody being so fluid through time in history, somebody moving so sinuously into different selves." Then we speak about the GENIUS who is Sarah Lucas. We discuss the immediacy of her work; how her sculptures make us feel and give precedent to how we inhabit our bodies; their POWER, humour, and comments on society. Finally we end with the great Ana Mendieta. One of the most important artists of the 20th century, Mendieta was known for exploring the body and identity through her performative and photographic works, that confront us directly as viewers: furiously, immediately, powerfully. It was a complete honour to speak with Olivia Laing, one of the greatest writers living right now. Further reading: http://olivialaing.co.uk/home I hope you enjoy the episode! This episode is sponsored by Alighieri  https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off!  Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield
May 12, 2020
Prudence Flint
00:40:51
In Episode 24 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the AMAZING artist PRUDENCE FLINT!! One of my FAVOURITE artists of 2020 – with her work particularly resonating with me at the time of lockdown – Prudence is known for her eerily quiet scenes of characters silently going about their daily lives. Swept up in her signature pastel-like palette, whilst it might at first appear as though her figures are performing seemingly mundane activities – lying on a bed to brushing their teeth – Prudence gives precedent to their actions by creating tense atmospheres in her slightly distorted and jarring environments. Painting both men and women, but focusing much more heavily on the female and the female psyche, Prudence’s work invites us into a narrative – an intimate, contemplative and private life, where we as viewers very much become an intruder, or a voyeur.  Based in Melbourne, Prudence is one of Australia's leading painters and is VERY excitingly included in an exhibition I have excitingly curated titled ‘Dwelling is the Light” at Timothy Taylor Gallery, featuring a multigenerational group of women exploring the relationship between interiors and the outdoors (https://timothytaylor.com/viewing-rooms/dwelling-is-the-light/). Speaking about women in her work she has said, “I wish for women to be at the center of things… to be all things, whole, boundless, perverse, and representative of humanity. I want to give voice to this experience of being alive, now, in this culture, as a woman.” I LOVED interviewing Prudence. It was such an insight to hear about her work in the context of the History of Art and her interest in the divine; exploring the beauty of the everyday; intensity of the home; dynamics between humans and their surroundings; and putting women at the centre of her work. Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by Alighieri  https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Use the code: TGWA for 10% off!  Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
May 05, 2020
Helen Molesworth on Alice Neel
00:58:20
In Episode 23 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the world's GREATEST writers and curators, Helen Molesworth on ALICE NEEL !!! The most exceptional portrait painter to ever life, and in my opinion, the most pioneering artist there ever was, Alice Neel was a visionary. Born as early as 1900 and based in NYC for her entire adulthood, Neel's life corresponded with the 20th century, which saw her live through political events, as well as a multitude of art movements and styles.   Painting her portraits in her signature thick blue and black outlines; scrutinising her sitter in every way; capturing the essence of the encounter; and owning her subject, Neel remained continuously loyal to her painterly style throughout the course of her six-decade-plus career.  Capturing art world stars such as Andy Warhol, to her cleaner Carmen and landlord's son, Benjamin, Alice Neel painted the world and community she surrounded herself, first in Harlem, and then on the Upper West Side. Dubbed 'a collector of souls' she painted people how she saw them: frank, honest, expressive, and truthful.  And then there are her revolutionary paintings of the nude: from sexualised portrayals of men to protruding pregnant women. WOW. Was she groundbreaking.  It was completely amazing to interview the genius Helen Molesworth, who is SO insightful on the life and work of Alice Neel. One of the most fun episodes I have ever recorded, we deep dive into Neel discussing her take on men, her encounters, and what her art means for the history of art.  Further reading/watching: Helen Molesworth at David Zwirner: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aULGfEQZPUA Essay by Helen Molesworth: https://www.davidzwirner.com/exhibitions/freedom-0 Hilton Als curated show, Uptown, at Victoria Miro: https://www.victoria-miro.com/exhibitions/506/ Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by Alighieri https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Enjoy 10% off using the code TGWA! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Apr 28, 2020
Jo Applin on Louise Bourgeois
00:52:02
In Episode 22 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the world-renowned feminist art historian, Dr Jo Applin, on the legendary, LOUISE BOURGEOIS !!! Born as early as 1911 and living for nearly ONE HUNDRED years, Louise Bourgeois was a visionary. One of the most important artists ever to exist, in this episode we deep dive into her extraordinary life and pioneering work, that marked a shift in art, forever.  Known for her large-scale sculptures and cell-like installations, as well as paintings, drawings, sculptures and more, Louise Bourgeois began her artistic practice in her native Paris. Originally associated with Surrealism due to her integration of fantastic elements into her prints and sculptures, when she moved to NYC in 1938, Louise began to focus on sculpture: creating biomorphic forms that enact the physicality of the body.  Whilst the 40s saw her experiment with her 'Personages' sculptures and paintings reminiscent of the female in the domestic space, the 60s saw her move into suggestive organ-like works using unconventional materials – from resin, latex, and cloth – to allude to a tension between quintessentially male and female forms. With the 70s marking a cultural shift in feminist ideas, Louise started to garner recognition, which was cemented by a major retrospective at MoMA in 1982. The last few decades saw her create her most iconic and most experimental: the giant spiders – which we discuss in great detail (in particular the Dia: Beacon exhibit) – and cells, which capture Bourgeois's quietly screaming psyche in way that has never before been documented.  I LOVED recording this episode with Jo Applin – one day prior to lockdown! Jo is also the Head of the History of Art department at the Courtauld Institute of Art. Focussing on American art since 1960, her research addresses questions of abstraction, ageing, eccentricity, feminism, sexuality, and subjectivity.  Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by Alighieri  https://alighieri.co.uk/ @alighieri_jewellery Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Apr 21, 2020
Laura Smith on Eileen Agar
00:48:12
In Episode 21 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the brilliant Whitechapel Gallery curator, Laura Smith on the acclaimed surrealist EILEEN AGAR! One of THE leading artists of the 20th century, Agar’s extensive seven-decade career spanned vibrant painting, collage, and found objects. It saw her create monumental four-metre wide canvases, to plaster heads, infused with feathers, diamonds, ribbons, and bows that defied all gender stereotypes. Born in Buenos Aires in 1899, Agar grew up in a strict, traditional household with a mother who wanted her to be married off. But Eileen had different thoughts. Running away to The Slade in the 1920s, Eileen was taken with the flamboyancy and eccentricity artists had to offer. But again, she was fed up with the traditions of art, and fled to Paris after destroying all her art prior to 1926. In Paris she thrived. Mixing with the Cubists and Surrealists, with whom she learned composition, form, and juxtaposition of colour. Returning to London in 1930, Agar created some of her most pivotal artworks, such as Three Symbols – a colossal painting that fused Greek antiquity, industrial modernity, to the feminist statement of the ‘three patriarchal pillars’ – Angel of Anarchy, and The Autobiography of an Embryo. Always experimenting in the most bizarre and wonderful of ways, obsessing over found objects which she fused together to create a whole new dialogue and language, Agar was always inherently surreal without even meaning to be. In the 30s she garnered huge critical success and was included in the monumental Surrealist exhibitions around the world. However, with the imminence and outbreak of war. Everything changed. I LOVED interviewing Laura for this episode, who has curated Eileen’s work in numerous exhibitions including the staggering, Virginia Woolf: An Exhibition Inspired by Her Writings. Listen now to discover the eccentric life of one of the greatest – and sometimes overlooked – artist who deserved every recognition possible! Thank you for listening!! Works discussed in this episode: https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/agar-three-symbols-t00707 https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/agar-the-autobiography-of-an-embryo-t05024 https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/agar-angel-of-anarchy-t03809 https://www.wikiart.org/en/eileen-agar/ladybird-1936 https://www.tate.org.uk/art/archive/items/tga-8927-8-12/agar-photograph-of-lee-miller-and-roland-penrose-on-the-beach This episode is sponsored by the National Art Pass and the Affordable Art Fair! @artfund: https://www.artfund.org/katy-hessel To receive a free tote bag with your National Art Pass, enter the code GREAT at checkout! @affordableartfairuk: https://affordableartfair.com/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Mar 03, 2020
Shirin Neshat
00:43:45
In Episode 20 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the INCREDIBLE, internationally-acclaimed artist, Shirin Neshat.  Born in 1957 in a small city in Iran, Neshat was 17 when she was sent to the United States to complete her education – first at a school in Southern California and then to Berkeley for her university education. However, due to the Islamic Revolution in 1979, she was prevented from returning to her country for close to 20 years, and although she studied art in college, it wasn’t until 1993 that she began to make art again.  Known for her work in photography, film and video that delve into issues of gender, identity and politics in Muslim countries, Neshat focuses on the relationship bewteen the personal and the political in past and present.  Her personal experiences as a Muslim woman in exile have particuarly informed her practice, and it is through the the medium of photography, film and video that she explores political structures that have shaped the history of Iran. Having just been the subject of a major survey exhibition spanning 25 years worth of work at LA’s The Broad, Shirin has exhibited at museums internationally, including the Serpentine Gallery here in London, the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington DC, as well as a major retrospective at the Detroit Institute of Arts in 2013, and many more. https://www.thebroad.org/shirinneshat In 1999, Neshat was awarded the Golden Lion Award, the First International Prize at the 48th Venice Biennale, and in 2009, directed her first feature-length film, Women Without Men, which received the Silver Lion Award for “Best Director” at the 66th Venice International Film Festival. For those in London, an exhibition by Shirin Neshat, Titled “Land of Dreams”, which includes the UK premiere of her most recent body of work, is currently on view at Goodman Gallery (until 28 March). http://www.goodman-gallery.com/exhibitions/1081 Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the National Art Pass and the Affordable Art Fair! @artfund: https://www.artfund.org/katy-hesselTo receive a free tote bag with your National Art Pass, enter the code GREAT at checkout!  @affordableartfairuk: https://affordableartfair.com/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Feb 25, 2020
Chantal Joffe on Charlotte Salomon
00:45:25
In Episode 19 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the most important painters in the world, CHANTAL JOFFE on the great artist CHARLOTTE SALOMON!   And WOW was it amazing to interview Chantal in her London studio on Charlotte Salomon, the Jewish-born German artist who created one of the most important and powerful artworks of the 20th century, "Life? or Theatre?", which is currently on view at the Jewish Museum here in London: https://jewishmuseum.org.uk/exhibitions/charlotte-salomon/ Created between the years of 1941–43 when the young Salomon was living in Nice having escaped Berlin, "Life? or Theatre?" is a dramatised autobiography that uses sound, text, simple language, images, and music to give expression of Salomon’s struggle living in Berlin in the 1930s, and her experience during the war. It is the MOST moving, incredible, heartbreaking 'graphic novel' compiled of 769 small gouaches on paper which Salomon created when in hiding from Nazi oppressors.  The work is essentially a self portrait; storyboard; or intimate visual narrative of the artist’s existence: from a complicated family life, growing up in Berlin, the rise of the Nazis, to her exile to France, and to what ultimately led to her impending fate: age 26, five months pregnant, in Auschwitz. This challenging masterpiece tells the story of her life, with death looming from the start. In pre-first world war Berlin, a young woman called Charlotte – the artist’s aunt who she’s named after – drowns herself, and as the story unfolds, we discover many more mental health issues and sadness in the artist’s family. But Charlotte carries on, as if always seeing the positive in this ever glooming light which seems madness to even be seen as real life, as emphasised by its title.  Chantal speaks so beautifully in this episode, enlightening us about Charlotte and her experience visiting this week. Placing a particular emphasis on the redemptive power of art. When I asked Chantal why she thought the young Salomon created "Life? or Theatre?", she responded: "She just had no choice and the minute she's picked up, brush, she was safe. Suddenly it saved her and that's why we see such speed is in those drawings". Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the National Art Pass and the Affordable Art Fair! @artfund: https://www.artfund.org/katy-hessel To receive a free tote bag with your National Art Pass, enter the code GREAT at checkout!  @affordableartfairuk: https://affordableartfair.com/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Feb 18, 2020
Genieve Figgis
00:38:09
In Episode 18 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the world-renowned Irish artist, GENIEVE FIGGIS!! And WOW was it amazing to interview Genieve, whose vibrant, loosely rendered, liquid-like works that reimagine classical scenes I have been SUCH a fan of since her inaugural London exhibition at Almine Rech back in 2015! Working in oil and acrylic and at small- to mid-scale, Genieve Figgis produces paintings rich in color, texture, and humor. Striking the balance between figuration, her marble-style and liquid-like paintings are reminiscent of the 18th century Rococo style.   Born in Dublin and now based in County Wicklow, Figgis was always interested in art, however it wasn’t until she was in her thirties with two small children, that she completed her art education in 2012. Exhibiting across Dublin galleries, it wasn’t until Figgis used Twitter to display her artwork in 2014, which caught the attention of one artist in particular – Richard Prince – who introduced Figgis to the New York art scene. Often reimagining and re-staging historical works – from Boucher, Fragonard, and Watteau – Figgis is particularly interested in scenes that feature sumptuous domestic interiors and stately country homes. It was such an honour to get to know and interview Genieve. We chat about everything from her strict Irish Catholic upbringing, what it was like entering a museum for the first time aged 19, going to art school later on in life, her ideas and interests behind her incredible painterly scenes, to her process and being an artist today.  See more of Genieve's work here:  https://www.genievefiggis.com/ Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the National Art Pass and the Affordable Art Fair! @artfund: https://www.artfund.org/katy-hessel To receive a free tote bag with your National Art Pass, enter the code GREAT at checkout!  @affordableartfairuk: https://affordableartfair.com/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by Amber Miller (@amber_m.iller) Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Feb 11, 2020
Jadé Fadojutimi
00:41:43
In Episode 17 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the most exciting young artists working in the world right now, JADÉ FADOJUTIMI !! And WOW was it amazing to record at Jadé's South London studio surrounded by her monumental works. She is SO brilliant and not only did we have so much fun recording this episode, but it is such a great insight to her work and also an honest experience being an artist. Working in painting and drawing, Jadé is known for her large-scale, vibrant and complex emotional landscapes that offer an insight into the artist’s quest for identity. Made up of loose, expressive and translucent brushstrokes, when witnessed in the flesh, the energy and conviction in her medium is completely infectious.  A fairly recent graduate of The Slade School of Art, where she completed her BA, and the Royal College of Art, where she completed her MA in 2017, the London born and bred Jadé has since gone on to exhibit widely across the world, including shows at Pippy Houldsworth, PEER, and more! Despite only being 26, Jadé has received high critical acclaim for her paintings, and this summer, will be included in the upcoming Liverpool Biennial as well as having a solo exhibition in Japan. Speaking about her work, she has said ‘painting is like looking into a windowpane and seeing the reflection of her self, the context in which she lives, and the distorted fusion of the two’.   See more of Jadé's works here:  http://jadefadojutimi.com/ Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the National Art Pass and the Affordable Art Fair! @artfund: https://www.artfund.org/katy-hessel To receive a free tote bag with your National Art Pass, enter the code GREAT at checkout!  @affordableartfairuk: https://affordableartfair.com/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by @_ellieclifford Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Feb 04, 2020
Hans Ulrich Obrist on Faith Ringgold and Luchita Hurtado
00:39:23
In Episode 16 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the brilliant super curator and Artistic Director of Serpentine Galleries, HANS ULRICH OBRIST on the legendary artists, Faith Ringgold AND Luchita Hurtado!!! And WOW was it amazing to record at Serpentine, where last summer Hans Ulrich curated monumental shows of their work. But despite both artists approaching their ninth and tenth decades, it was Luchita's first solo exhibition EVER, and for Faith it was also her first ever in-depth European institutional show ever!! https://www.serpentinegalleries.org/exhibitions-events/faith-ringgold https://www.serpentinegalleries.org/exhibitions-events/luchita-hurtado-i-live-i-die-i-will-be-reborn In this episode Hans Ulrich takes us through what he calls the "Rosemarie Trockel methodology" – his urgent interest to find out about and platform the older women artists who are yet to receive major recognition during their lifetime. And it was this that he applied to both Faith and Luchita.  In this episode we discuss Faith Ringgold, the artist and activist, who was born in Harlem in 1930 and who continues to tirelessly challenge perceptions of African American identity and gender inequality in her extensive five-decade-and-counting career. Known for her painted story quilts that combine personal narratives, history and politics, Ringgold grew up in the creative and intellectual context of the Harlem Renaissance, and was inspired by her surrounded contemporaries including writers James Baldwin and Amari Baraka. Exhibiting widely, it is only recently that Faith's career has been put into the spotlight, with one of her most famous paintings, American People #20 situated in the most prominent position of the new MoMA! https://www.moma.org/collection/works/199915 However unlike Faith, Luchita, who we also discuss (who is 99 and based in Santa Monica in California) had never had any recognition up until Hans Ulrich visited her at her studio just a few years ago! Known for her incredibly surreal paintings that play with light and perspectives, Luchita's work very much concerns itself with the environment – not only does she still continue to attend protests, but making ecologically activistic posters is an inherent part of her practice.  What is so interesting about both artists is how contemporary their ideas and approaches to art are, in addition to how timely their work feels – despite some of it made over fifty years ago!  I absolutely LOVED recording this episode with Hans Ulrich. His infectious energy and enthusiasm for these artists, and in particular platforming older women artists, was so admirable. I hope you enjoy the conversation!  Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the National Art Pass and the Affordable Art Fair! @artfund: https://www.artfund.org/katy-hessel To receive a free tote bag with your National Art Pass, enter the code GREAT at checkout!  @affordableartfairuk: https://affordableartfair.com/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by @_ellieclifford Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Jan 28, 2020
Jessie Burton on Frida Kahlo
00:53:32
In Episode 15 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the brilliant best-selling author, Jessie Burton, on the great FRIDA KAHLO !!!!!!! And WOW was it incredible to record at Jessie's beautiful home surrounded by everything Frida: from mugs, cushions, candles, posters, to doorstops, Jessie has even painted her writing out-house 'Frida-blue' (!). What a hero! I first found out about Jessie's fascination with the artist after reading a beautiful essay she wrote in 2017 for Harper's Bazaar after making the pilgrimage to Frida's house, Casa Azul, around the time of the V&A Exhibition. You can read a shorter version here: https://www.harpersbazaar.com/uk/culture/a21341120/frida-kahlo-the-agony-and-the-ecstacy/ Frida is known to be one of the most iconic artists from history. Her image has been countlessly reproduced in the world, but how much do we really know about the woman behind the portrait...? Born in 1907 (she always claimed it was 1910 to be a 'child of the revolution'), Frida grew up in Mexico City, but life wasn't always easy. Disabled by polio as a child, Frida was involved in a horrific bus accident aged 18 which shattered her body. After being bed-bound, she began to paint – portraits of those around her, self-portraits of her reality and her constant reminder of death. But despite all the tragedy, she never let herself be the victim.  A left-wing activist, Frida married her husband, Diego Rivera – the then superstar artist of his day. The couple travelled around the world and were each other's biggest inspirations, but it wasn't always smooth – something we come to learn the more explore her work.  Through her portraiture Frida documented her life: her dual identity, love, death, religion, marriage, fertility, infertility. Portraying truthful scenarios, Jessie and I discuss the constant mask she wears and the constant search for identity in her work, whether that be mixing her European and Mexican heritage, her two selves, and her constant battle with the impending doom of death.  I couldn't be MORE excited to release this episode. Jessie tells the story of Frida through a writer's lens, calling her "a writer's dream". We go through her life story, but also her works, and ask ourselves: what is it that makes Frida so iconic, so relatable, so empowering?! Tune in NOW! :) Want to read more. Check out Jessie's brilliant books here: https://www.jessieburton.co.uk/index.html – available from all good bookshops!  Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the National Art Pass and the Affordable Art Fair! @artfund: https://bit.ly/32HJVDk To receive a free tote bag with your National Art Pass, enter the code GREAT at checkout!  @affordableartfairuk: https://affordableartfair.com/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by @_ellieclifford Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Jan 21, 2020
Emma Lewis on Dora Maar
00:41:11
WELCOME BACK to SEASON 2 of The GWA Podcast!! In Episode 14 (or Ep1, S2!)  of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the brilliant Tate Modern curator, Emma Lewis on DORA MAAR!!  And WOW was it incredible to record at Tate Modern where Emma has curated the HIGHLY critically acclaimed ~ and first ever UK retrospective ~ of the great French photographer and painter (on view until 15th March, don’t miss – https://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/exhibition/dora-maar!!) Maar was one of the most celebrated Surrealist photographers who lived in Paris in the early half of the 20th century. She exhibited widely in the 1930s, featuring in all six Surrealist exhibitions around the world, yet why is it that she has only really been celebrated since her death in 1997!? After setting up a studio in her early 20s Maar THRIVED and earned herself some of the biggest commissions from the brands of her day, creating some of the most inventive and creative adverts for shampoo to anti-ageing cream. Always capturing the ‘modern woman’, Marr also ventured to the streets of London and Barcelona where she captured the surreal aspects of the every day. In 1935 she met Picasso, with whom she collaborated and taught photography – and ended up documenting the metamorphosis of Guernica. But it was in this relationship that she took up painting agin, capturing a very tense and painful few years through her work “The Conversation”, but it is also this work that Emma reveals majorly influenced her former lover... In this episode we learn just HOW pioneering, brilliant, and radical Maar was for her day; her constant influence on the surrealists (and Picasso...!); and life post 1946, where her post-War career took a turn and she ventured for the south of France. TUNE IN NOW.  Further information:  https://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/exhibition/dora-maar https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artists/dora-maar-15766/seven-things-know-dora-maar Dora Maar EVENTS! Curator's talk with Emma Lewis at Tate Modern –  https://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/exhibition/dora-maar/curators-talk-dora-maar Panel discussion at Tate modern –  https://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/exhibition/dora-maar/surreal-nature-reality Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the National Art Pass and the Affordable Art Fair! @artfund: artfund.org/great To receive a free tote bag with your National Art Pass, enter the code GREAT at checkout!  @affordableartfairuk: https://affordableartfair.com/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by @_ellieclifford Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Jan 14, 2020
Zoe Whitley on Betye Saar
00:42:20
In Episode 13 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the most important and groundbreaking curators working today, Dr Zoe Whitley on BETYE SAAR!! And WOW was it incredible to record with Zoe at London's Hayward Gallery – where she is senior curator – to discuss the life and work of the now 93 year-old Betye, who featured in Zoe's 2017 Tate Modern (and now touring) exhibition, SOUL OF A NATION!  Betye Saar is one of the most important artists in contemporary art, and currently has solo exhibitions on right now at both MoMA and LACMA! Known for her political collages and assemblages of found objects that mix surreal symbolic imagery with a folk art aesthetic, Saar has contributed enormously to the history of art from her involvement with the Black Arts Movement of the 1960s and 70s, right up to the present day. Growing up in the 30s and 40s in Los Angeles, Saar was inspired by Joseph Cornell’s assemblages and Simon Rodia’s “Watts Towers” nearby to where she grew up made from found scrap materials.   Raised by strong women who always encouraged her creativity, as well as identity as a black woman, Saar’s work predominately critiques American racism toward blacks. It was in the 1960s that she began collecting images of stereotypes African-American figures from folk culture and advertising of the Jim Crow era, which she transformed into figures of political protest.   A work we discuss in depth is “The Liberation of Aunt Jemima” which remains one of her most important works from this era (also exhibited at Zoe's incredible “Soul of a Nation”), a mixed-media assemblage which uses the stereotypical figure of the ‘mammy’ to subvert traditions of race and gender.   Speaking about the work she said: “I feel that The Liberation of Aunt Jemima is my iconic art piece. I had no idea she would become so important to so many. The reason I created her was to combat bigotry and racism and today she stills serves as my warrior against those ills of our society.” She is INCREDIBLE, and a force. And Zoe's enthusiasm, personal approach and expertise in Betye Saar is SO inspiring!!!   If you want to see more then DO NOT miss Zoe's co-curated "Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power 1963–1983" currently on view at San Francisco's de Young Museum (https://deyoung.famsf.org/exhibitions/soul-of-a-nation); and for those in LA and NYC don't miss her show at MoMA (https://www.moma.org/calendar/exhibitions/5060) and LACMA (https://www.lacma.org/art/exhibition/betye-saar-call-and-response). . GO BETYE! Works discussed in this episode/ Further reading Black Girls Window (1969) https://www.moma.org/audio/playlist/302The Liberation of Aunt Jemima (1972) http://revolution.berkeley.edu/liberation-aunt-jemima/ Soul of a Nation at Tate Modern https://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/exhibition/soul-nation-art-age-black-power Here is also an incredible essay recently published in the NY Times https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/04/arts/design/betye-saar.html Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the National Art Pass and the Affordable Art Fair! @artfund: https://bit.ly/32HJVDk To receive a free tote bag with your National Art Pass, enter the code GREAT at checkout!  @affordableartfairuk: https://affordableartfair.com/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Recorded by Joel Price Sound editing by @_ellieclifford Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Dec 17, 2019
Celia Paul
00:48:14
In Episode 12 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the foremost painters working in the world right now, CELIA PAUL!! And WOW was it incredible to record with Celia in her live-in studio – one of the most amazing places I have ever visited – which we discuss in great detail in the episode, as well as her extensive career.  Known for her intimate and expressive portraits of people and places close to her, as well as her statuesque and monumental self portraits, Celia is one of Britain's most celebrated artists who is currently the subject of an unmissable exhibition at Victoria Miro Gallery in London (closes 20 December!).  Born in 1959 in India, Celia moved to the UK with her family when she was five, and it was at age 16 that she was recognised by the Slade School of Art’s then director, Lawrence Gowing, who insisted she enrol at The Slade earlier than most, because of her precocious talent for painting.  In this episode we discuss Celia's upbringing in India; what led her to become an artist; her experience living in London for the first time to study at The Slade; the act of portraiture; painting her family; and what it means to be a female artist today – who is often wrongly cast in the shadow of her male contemporaries.  “I am not a portrait painter. If I’m anything, I have always been an autobiographer and a chronicler of my life and family”. This was one of the MOST interesting conversations I have ever had in my life, and I really hope you enjoy it. Not only is it such an insight into one of the greatest artists working today, but also a FASCINATING way to hear how an artist lives their life.  If you want to see or read more, then do NOT miss her incredible exhibition at Victoria Miro: https://www.victoria-miro.com/exhibitions/548/ If you want to find out more, read her unbelievably brilliant memoir, Self Portrait: https://www.penguin.co.uk/books/111/1118130/self-portrait/9781787331846.html (with a fantastic review by the one and only Zadie Smith: https://www.nybooks.com/articles/2019/11/21/muse-easel-celia-paul-lucian-freud/). WORKS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE  My Sisters In Mourning (2015–16) https://www.victoria-miro.com/news/1361 Family Group, 1981 https://www.victoria-miro.com/news/930 Family Group, 1980 https://www.nybooks.com/articles/2019/11/21/muse-easel-celia-paul-lucian-freud/ Further works – https://www.victoria-miro.com/exhibitions/548/ Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the National Art Pass and the Affordable Art Fair! @artfund: https://bit.ly/32HJVDk To receive a free tote bag with your National Art Pass, enter the code GREAT at checkout!  @affordableartfairuk: https://affordableartfair.com/ Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by @_ellieclifford Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Dec 10, 2019
Maggi Hambling
00:34:21
In Episode 11 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the legendary British painter and sculptor, MAGGI HAMBLING! And WOW was it fun (and definitely an experience!) to visit the very brilliant Maggi in her South London studio to speak about her extensive and incredible five decades-and-counting career. Known for her portraits of the likes of comedian Max Wall to chemist Dorothy Hodgkin, sublime depictions of seascapes, public sculptures that include a 4-metre high steel 'Scallop' on Aldeburgh Beach, Maggi is always one to give her viewer some sort of immediate reaction, whether that be physical, emotional, or at times, controversial. Born in 1945, Maggi grew up in rural Suffolk with her two older siblings – which we discuss weren't particularly happy about her being a girl – before going on to study under Cedric Morris and Lett Haines, and later Camberwell, and the Slade School of Art. In this episode – which starts with a little surprise – we discuss the artist's upbringing and beginnings with art, what led her to become top in her class age 15, her time being the first artist in residence at London’s National Gallery in 1980, to painting the truth in comedians, dealing with grief through painting (referencing her nickname Maggi "coffin" Hambling!), and how it was through art that she could 'get closer to the man in the street'. This was one of the most incredible experiences of my life. Maggi is not just a brilliant artist but a hilarious person who tells tales from her fascinating career, all whilst smoking at least nine or so cigarettes over the course of our interview – listen out for the lighters! WORKS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE  Dorothy Hodgkin, 1985 https://www.npg.org.uk/collections/search/portrait/mw07497/Dorothy-Hodgkin Max Wall, 1981  https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/hambling-max-wall-and-his-image-t03542 Stephen Fry, 1993 https://www.npg.org.uk/collections/search/portrait/mw09544/Stephen-Fry Father, Late December, 1997  https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/hambling-father-late-december-1997-t07835 Film of Maggi by Tate:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M4-4Syn1pmE Further reading on her seascapes:  https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/4px9CyGCzjPWBYKFn8BgmXC/stormy-waters-maggi-hambling-returns-to-the-national Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the National Art Pass/ @artfund: https://bit.ly/32HJVDk To receive a free tote bag with your National Art Pass, enter the code GREAT at checkout! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Recorded by Joel Price Sound editing by @_ellieclifford Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Dec 03, 2019
Iwona Blazwick on Anna Maria Maiolino
00:34:55
In Episode 10 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the legendary Director of Whitechapel Gallery IWONA BLAZWICK on the radical Brazilian artist ANNA MARIA MAIOLINO!! And WOW is it incredible to hear one of the most important curators in the WORLD today speaking so passionately about one of the greatest Latin American artists – who also has an unmissable exhibition on right now at Whitechapel Gallery.  With a career spanning five decades and counting, 77 year-old Maiolino works across a multitude of mediums including performance, photography, and sculpture. Born in Italy during WW2, Maiolino emigrated to Venezuela and then Brazil, where she lived in extreme politically unstable times under a dictatorship.  But this fuelled Maiolino to make art that reflected these times: hidden away from the authorities, and challenging what it really meant to be a woman in this environment.  Known for her blindfolded performances where she avoided treading on hundreds of eggshells to highlight the fragility of life under a dictatorship, sculptures of the body that featured just the basic system to emulate the mere 'existence' of life under a dictatorship, Maiolino also focusses on simple shapes and forms to emphasise the universality of art and clay, substituting it for a language that, as an immigrant, never felt was hers.  I cannot STRESS how fascinating my chat with the brilliant Iwona Blazwick was. It made me realise so much about what artists do to survive when under political scrutiny, but also how much Mailino's work applies not just to artists, but to the public today.  We also discuss Iwona's role as a museum director and what that means in 2019; programming women artists exhibitions now compared to the 80s and 90s; 'exclusion' (such as women and Latin American artists) in the traditional art historical canon; the importance of diversity in institutions; and making shows relevant and accessible for everyone today.  Anna Maria Maiolino: Making Love Revolutionary is at the Whitechapel Gallery until 12 January:  https://www.whitechapelgallery.org/exhibitions/anna-maria-maiolino/ Further reading: https://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/exhibition/ey-exhibition-world-goes-pop/artist-biography/anna-maria-maiolino https://frieze.com/article/i-allowed-myself-be-eaten-anna-maria-maiolino-cultural-cannibalism-brazil Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the National Art Pass/ @artfund: https://bit.ly/32HJVDk To receive a free tote bag with your National Art Pass, enter the code GREAT at checkout! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by @_ellieclifford Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Nov 26, 2019
Unskilled Worker
00:39:36
In Episode 09 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the brilliant London-based artist, Helen Downie, who goes under the guise of UNSKILLED WORKER!  A self-taught artist who first started painting aged 48 a mere six years ago, Unskilled Worker rose to prominence after posting her work online (instagram.com/unskilledworker), amassing nearly 300,000 Instagram followers, which led to designing collections for Gucci, and exhibiting at museums all over the world. Known for her intensely vibrant and poetic dreamlike canvases full of her very personal portrayals of people – from those in her imagination, to those who feature in her past and present – Unskilled Worker draws the viewer into a highly atmospheric world of childlike innocence. In this episode we discuss the artist's lifelong fascination with people; what led her to pick up a paintbrush age 48; picking up her subjects where she left off aged 14; painting Oscar Wilde to Radclyffe Hall; and how she learnt to live life as a painter – as well as dealing with such a dominant internet presence.   It was an honour to interview the great painter, who also speaks very movingly about dealing with grief through painting – and how occasionally, those from her past who may have got lost along the way, appear on the page in front of her.   WORKS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE Where's Ted https://www.instagram.com/p/BujBg5eDOqD/ Faraway Boy https://www.instagram.com/p/BzLuy_sBUrv/ The Arrival https://www.instagram.com/p/Bvb9r3ujcQP/ Self Portrait https://www.instagram.com/p/BdXY9z2DgR3/ An English Idyll 2 https://www.instagram.com/p/BaMkZjpD0V5/ Radclyffe Hall and Una – The Tiger That Lost His Stripes https://www.instagram.com/p/BXNwcaPD9ST/ Oscar and Boesie https://www.instagram.com/p/BWprTZxDlv_/ Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the National Art Pass/ @artfund: https://bit.ly/32HJVDk To receive a free tote bag with your National Art Pass, enter the code GREAT at checkout! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by @_ellieclifford Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Nov 19, 2019
Frances Morris on Agnes Martin
00:43:49
In Episode 08 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the Director of Tate Modern, FRANCES MORRIS (!), on the mammoth American abstract painter, AGNES MARTIN!! And WOW, is it incredible to hear such a groundbreaking curator speak SO passionately and eloquently about one of the greatest abstract painters to ever live. With a career that spanned five decades, Agnes Martin was known for her square canvases and meticulously rendered grids that translated into some of the most otherworldly pieces of art. Born in 1912, she grew up in rural Canada surrounded by nature before relocating to New York, where she worked alongside the Abstract Expressionists. In 1968 she relocated back to rural life and later settled in New Mexico, where she lived in monk-like conditions, painting everyday, up until her death in 2004. We discuss Frances's first-hand experiences with Martin's work; how she feels in front of one of her sublime paintings; what led her to curate such a spectacular exhibition in 2015; and of course, what the great artist taught her – ultimately, to look. It was such a privilege to speak to Frances Morris on Agnes Martin, and to hear such a personal response to a great artist. I hope you enjoy!!   WORKS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE Morning, 1965 https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/martin-morning-t01866 Friendship, 1963 https://www.moma.org/collection/works/79842 On A Clear Day, 1973 https://www.moma.org/collection/works/63682 Happy Holiday, 1999 https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/martin-happy-holiday-ar00179 Further information Frances's Tate exhibition:  https://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/exhibition/agnes-martin Short film by Tate:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=902YXjchQsk Mary Lance's documentary on Agnes Martin:  https://vimeo.com/ondemand/withmybacktotheworld Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the National Art Pass/ @artfund: https://bit.ly/32HJVDk To receive a free tote bag with your National Art Pass, enter the code GREAT at checkout! Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Recorded by Joel Price Sound editing by @_ellieclifford Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield Thanks to Well Fray-Smith https://www.thegreatwomenartists.com/
Nov 12, 2019
Aïcha Mehrez on Lisa Brice
00:40:29
In Episode 07 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the amazing Tate Britain curator, Aïcha Mehrez, on one of the GREATEST painters working today, LISA BRICE!!!! And WOW. You think you know Lisa's phenomenally stunning work filled with women in moments of down-time in their private world? Think again. There are layers upon LAYERS of art historical references that she cannily interweaves that completely DISRUPTS every painting ever seen through the lens of the male gaze. Lisa is a genius and THE painter of our time.  Re-appropriating the likes of Millais' Ophelia, or Vallotton's unnamed woman, Lisa immortalises these dismissed women from art history by giving them life, their own personality, feet to stand on, and often half nude with a cigarette in hand.  We discuss the exhibition Aïcha curated at Tate Britain last year, plus Lisa's South African heritage and ties to Trinidad through the colour blue and its many different meanings. We also fan girl her ability to lure viewers into these private worlds disguised under a thin sheet or curtain, to gaze on these incredibly seductive and surreal women in their private and domestic spaces.  DO NOT MISS the last week of Lisa's phenomenal exhibition at Stephen Friedman Gallery which ends THIS SATURDAY 9 NOVEMBER!  WORKS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE No Bare Back, after Embah, 2017 – https://bit.ly/2PM4KLiBetween This And That, 2017 – https://bit.ly/36z4d5d Midday Drinking Den, after Embah I, 2017 – https://bit.ly/2NItSzFAfter Ophelia, 2018 – https://bit.ly/2PIaSUR Screen in SFG show https://www.stephenfriedman.com/exhibitions/current/lisa-brice/1569672547_brice_at_sfg_2019_1-jpg Stephen Friedman Gallery show (until 9 November) https://www.stephenfriedman.com/exhibitions/current/lisa-brice/ Lisa Brice curated by Aïcha Mehrez at Tate Britain https://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-britain/exhibition/lisa-brice Further reading Aïcha Mehrez in conversation with Lisa Brice https://www.tate.org.uk/tate-etc/issue-43-summer-2018/lisa-brice-art-now-interview-aicha-mehrez Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the National Art Pass/ @artfund https://www.artfund.org/national-art-pass Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Sound editing by @_ellieclifford Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Music by Ben Wetherfield
Nov 05, 2019
Joanna Moorhead on Leonora Carrington
00:55:31
In Episode 06 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews journalist Joanna Moorhead, the long lost cousin, biographer and world expert of one of the greatest surrealist painters ever to exist, LEONORA CARRINGTON!!! And WOW, will it shock you to find out that Joanna only found out about her long lost cousin a mere THIRTEEN years ago, by which point the great artist was 89. Determined to track her down, Joanna flew straight to Mexico to find her cousin – who was never allowed to be spoken about in her family since her dramatic exit in 1937... Born in 1917 in a large gothic mansion – that inspired many of her later paintings – Carrington had an isolated childhood. The only girl of three brothers, age 15 Carrington was sent to London be a debutant, but she resisted, only to head straight to art school where she ended up falling in love with Max Ernst, the married Surrealist painter 26 years her senior... After a huge row with her family – she never saw her father again – she headed straight for Paris. But this was 1936 and war was imminent. And it wasn't going to be easy for the young Leonora to venture out on her own. Listen now to discover how the young Leonora escaped Europe for Mexico, the country where Carrington resided until her death in 2011... I couldn't be more delighted to interview Joanna about Leonora and her fantastically surreal paintings – many of which echo her childhood – and to find out first hand about the artist's life and take on her work, and of course, their meeting in 2006. WORKS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE:  Self Portrait (In of the Dawn Horse), 1937–38https://www.metmuseum.org/en/art/collection/search/492697 Portrait of Max Ernst, 1939https://www.nationalgalleries.org/art-and-artists/164061/portrait-max-ernst Do You Know My Aunt Eliza?, 1941https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/carrington-do-you-know-my-aunt-eliza-t11911 Green Tea, 1942https://bit.ly/31N9PoY Crookhey Hall, 1947https://bit.ly/2BNPhC8 Grandma Moorhead's Aromatic Kitchen, 1975https://bit.ly/2PnZGMV Further reading –  Joanna's book: https://www.virago.co.uk/titles/joanna-moorhead/the-surreal-life-of-leonora-carrington/9780349008776/ Article on the book: https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/apr/05/the-surreal-life-of-leonora-carrington-joanna-moorhead-review BBC documentary: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SxEF1bjgt5Q&t=1121s Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the Affordable Art Fair: @affordableartfairuk Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Sound editing by @_ellieclifford Music by Ben Wetherfield
Oct 29, 2019
Ami Bouhassane on Lee Miller
00:51:46
In Episode 05 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews Ami Bouhassane on the life and work of her grandmother: the model turned surrealist, photographer, war correspondent and all-round 20th century artistic giant, LEE MILLER!! And WOW will this episode blow you away. Especially when you hear that Ami’s father, Antony Penrose, was unaware of his mother’s professional photographic life until after she passed away in 1977... Born in 1907, Lee Miller first entered the world of photography in New York after falling into the arms of Conde Nast on a Manhattan street. It didn't take long before she was already on her way to Paris, in particular the studio of Man Ray, with whom she created some of the most iconic surrealist photography. Fast forward to 1932 and she's back in NYC at the height of the depression where she excelled running her own commercial photographic studio. Off again, back to Paris via Egypt, and then the UK at the outbreak of World War II, where Lee quickly adopted the role of a war correspondent, photographing on the front line, but also ensuring that she was recording women’s contribution to the war. However life took a turn after witnessing some of the most horrific scenes that war was to bring. I couldn’t be more delighted to interview Ami on her grandmother who is one of the MOST remarkable artists to live, whose story needs to be told, AND whose work needs to be seen. We recorded the episode down at Farley's Farm, on the site of Miller’s former home, where where Ami and her father Antony continue to run the archive, gallery (that you can visit!), and ensure the legacy of the great Lee Miller. See more info here: https://www.farleyshouseandgallery.co.uk/ WORKS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE Lee Miller's front cover for Vogue https://bit.ly/2BwRqlD Paris: Nude https://bit.ly/2pFRSuY Egypt: Portrait of Space, 1937 https://bit.ly/2P5bZgR World War II images: https://www.iwm.org.uk/history/lee-millers-second-world-war Fire Masks, Hampstead: https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2015/sep/19/lee-miller-a-womans-war-exhibition-imperial-war-museum-second-world-war-dachau-hitler#img-1 Lee Miller's cookbook: https://www.leemiller.co.uk/article/Award-winning-book-Lee-Miller-A-Life-with-Food-Friends-amp-Recipes/pJV_ykrXKJusXwM7yD3-Hg..a Further reading: http://www.vam.ac.uk/content/articles/l/lee-miller/ https://www.eiderdownbooks.com/product-page/lee-miller-by-ami-bouhassane Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the Affordable Art Fair: @affordableartfairuk Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Sound editing by @_ellieclifford / @naomiabel Music by Ben Wetherfield
Oct 21, 2019
Tschabalala Self
00:37:55
In Episode 04 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the most highly regarded young artists working today, the Harlem-born painter, TSCHABALALA SELF!! A graduate of the Yale School of Art and a recent participant of the AMAZING Studio Museum Residency, the brilliant Tschabalala is known for her expressive, vibrant and dynamic works of human figure, that combines paint, printmaking, collage and sculpture. With her primary concern centred on the black female body, Self explores subjects around race, gender, and identity through powerful and bold images of women. In this episode we discuss Tschabalala's beginnings in Harlem, the place that has culturally shaped who she is today and the impact it's had on her work; the artists who continue to inspire her – from Faith Ringgold, Kehinde Wiley and Clementine Hunter; the stories behind the figures and the 'settings' she places them in; her artistic process; interests in the environment that surrounds her characters, in particular the bodega; and her previous and current exhibitions – one of which, "Thigh High" is on right now at Pilar Corrias Gallery in London. She is SO brilliant and SO interesting, and I couldn't be more honoured to interview someone right at the forefront of their career. She's killing it. ENJOY!! WORKS / EXHIBITIONS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE: Bodega Run –  The Hammer, LA: https://hammer.ucla.edu/exhibitions/2019/hammer-projects-tschabalala-self/ Pila Corrias, London: https://www.pilarcorrias.com/exhibitions/tschabalala-self-bodega-run/ Thigh High –  Currently on view at Pilar Corrias, until 9 November: https://www.pilarcorrias.com/exhibitions/tschabalala-self/ Tschabalala Self – Parasol Unit, 2017: https://parasol-unit.org/whats-on/tschabalala-self/ Studio Museum Residency: https://www.moma.org/calendar/exhibitions/5086 Upcoming exhibitions: ICA Boston –  https://www.icaboston.org/exhibitions/tschabalala-self-out-body Artists discussed include: Faith Ringgold, Mickalene Thomas, Wangechi Mutu, Clementine Hunter Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the Affordable Art Fair: @affordableartfairuk Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Sound editing by @_ellieclifford / @_naomiabel Music by Ben Wetherfield
Oct 14, 2019
Juno Calypso
00:44:22
In Episode 03 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews one of the most exciting and brilliant photographers working today, JUNO CALYPSO!!! Known for her self portraits where she stages herself as a fictional character named ‘Joyce’ in the likes of Honeymoon Hotels in America, 70s style flats in Malta, or more recently in a kitsch underground bunker on the outskirts of Vegas, Juno’s work is always very distinctly pink and elaborate, with a lot of dark undertones. After graduating from London College of Communications in 2012, Juno has since gone on to win multiple awards for her work, including the British Journal of Photography and the Royal Photographic Society, and has had six solo exhibitions across London and Milan. In this episode we discuss Juno's career so far, how she became interested in self portraiture experimenting with digital cameras in the late 90s and early 00s; her experience at university; incredible recent photographic projects, The Honeymoon and What To Do With A Million Years; her constant and refreshing examination of female self-perception; and how she's catapulted into being one of the most recognisable and exciting photographers working today. I couldn't be more delighted to have Juno as my third guest. Not only is she amazing AND hilarious, but her unnerving stories of finding the most kitsch and insanely incredible locations (you won't believe are real) are just fantastic. She has A LOT of good stories. ENJOY!!! WORKS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE: Early Work – Popcorn Venus, 2012 https://www.junocalypso.com/joyce-ii/403ytame26ukmyc3nv2iy9oancorht Joyce – 12 Reasons You're Tired All The Time, 2013 https://www.junocalypso.com/joyce-ii/8oj5qrr18him0sra6i6ymi8qyxz0bv The Honeymoon –  Eternal Beauty, 2014 https://www.junocalypso.com/produce/k4d0u0w5q499ico00rkwiu973r0ee0 A Dream in Green, 2015 https://www.junocalypso.com/produce/yaorcuo0dsom4rtagq3bo6e3f6lt86 The Honeymoon Suite, 2015 https://www.junocalypso.com/produce/kd0v7lml0hi6gea393xmahjhcpuy9g Sensory Deprivation, 2016 https://www.junocalypso.com/produce/sensorydeprivation What To Do With A Million Years –  Tuesday in Eternity, 2018 https://www.junocalypso.com/2018/11/7/tuesday-in-eternity-2018 Subterrenean Kitchen, 2018 https://www.junocalypso.com/2018/11/7/2018/11/7/subterranean-kitchen-2018 Die Now Pay Later, 2018 https://www.junocalypso.com/2018/11/7/die-now-pay-later-2018 The Entrance, 2018 https://www.junocalypso.com/2018/11/7/the-entrance-2018 Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the Affordable Art Fair: @affordableartfairuk Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Sound editing by @_ellieclifford / @naomiabel Music by Ben Wetherfield
Oct 07, 2019
Es Devlin
00:47:52
In Episode 02 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the sensational artist and stage designer, ES DEVLIN!! Known for creating some of the most memorable sets and stages the world has ever seen – including for the likes of Beyonce, Adele and Kanye West – Es is also world-renowned for her theatre and opera sets for The National Theatre to the Royal Opera House. Revolutionising the stage with her iconic and memorable sculptures, projections and cubes, Es also embarks on her own artworks including her Mirror Mazes, AI-generated poetry sculptures, and Memory Palaces, the latter of which is currently on view at Pitzhanger Manor. See more here: https://www.pitzhanger.org.uk/whats-on/current-events-exhibitions/ In this episode we discuss Es’s role to impact the collective memory of 100,000 people at one time; bringing words and music to life through sculpture and sets; her upbringing in Rye and influences as a child; as well as going through her PHENOMENAL works that I really find to be some of the most emotional I've ever witnessed. She's amazing. Have a listen! WORKS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE: Mirror Maze at Copeland Park (2016) www.youtube.com/watch?v=IMbLlN_6AD8 Hamlet at Barbican (2015) esdevlin.com/work/hamlet-barbican Lehman Trilogy at National Theatre (2018/19) www.wallpaper.com/design/es-devlin…ilogy-sam-mendes Beyonce's Formation Tour (2016) esdevlin.com/work/beyonce Kanye West x Jay Z Tour (2013) www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/20…w-for-kanye-west Adele World Arena Tour (2016) esdevlin.com/work/adele-world-tour Camen at Bregenz Festival (2018) esdevlin.com/work/carmen-bregenz UK Pavilion – Dubai Expo (2020) esdevlin.com/work/uk-pavillion Please Feed The Lions (2018) esdevlin.com/work/lions Memory Palace at Pitzhanger (2019) www.pitzhanger.org.uk/whats-on/curre…s-exhibitions/ This is the Rye model! https://www.ryeheritage.co.uk/rye-town-model/ Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the Affordable Art Fair. Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner Sound editing by @_ellieclifford / @naomiabel Music by Ben Wetherfield
Sep 30, 2019
Eleanor Nairne on Lee Krasner
00:43:12
In episode 01 of The Great Women Artists Podcast, Katy Hessel interviews the exceptional curator, Eleanor Nairne, about the Abstract Expressionist sensation, LEE KRASNER!! Born in 1908 Brooklyn to a Jewish family, Krasner was known as one of the greatest painters of the 20th century. Nairne, who recently curated “Lee Krasner: Living Colour” at London's Barbican Centre, catapulted her into the spotlight after decades of the artist often being overshadowed by her former husband, Jackson Pollock. Whether you’re a die-hard Krasner fan (like me), or have never even heard of her at all, TUNE IN to here us discussing her incredible career. We cover Krasner’s Brooklyn childhood, the moment “The Modern” opens in 1929 (aka MoMA), her education at the all-women’s Washington Irving School and later Cooper Union in NYC, her formidable determination to become one of the greatest artists of all time, seminal works and of course her very interesting (and at times heartbreaking!) life story. WORKS DISCUSSED IN THE EPISODE: Another storm (1963) Mural (1943–7 by Jackson Pollock)  Self Portrait (1928) Prophecy (1956)  Little images (1946–50)  Mosaic Table (1947)  Night series: The Eye is the First Circle (1960) Further information about Eleanor's fantastic exhibition: https://www.barbican.org.uk/whats-on/2019/event/lee-krasner-living-colour Thank you for listening!! This episode is sponsored by the Affordable Art Fair. Produced and presented by Katy Hessel Sound editing by Ellie Clifford/ Naomi Abel-Hirsch Follow us: Katy Hessel: @thegreatwomenartists / @katy.hessel Artwork by @thisisaliceskinner @_ellieclifford / @naomiabel Music by Ben Wetherfield
Sep 24, 2019
The Great Women Artists Trailer
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Welcome to The Great Women Artists Podcast! Created off the back of @thegreatwomenartists Instagram, this podcast is all about celebrating women artists from a variety of backgrounds and histories. Presented by art historian and curator, Katy Hessel, each episode will interview artists on their career, or curators, writers, or general art lovers, on the female artist who means the most to them. First episode out TUESDAY 24 SEPTEMBER! Get in touch: thegreatwomenartists@gmail.com
Sep 16, 2019