Celebrating female artists for Women's History Month

May 15, 2013 8:49:01 AM PDT
March is Women's History Month and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts has an exhibit celebrating female artists.

The exhibit is called "The Female Gaze: Women Artists Making their World." It's nearly 250 works, collected by a fellow female artist who felt women weren't getting enough recognition in museums and galleries.

Philadelphia artist Linda Lee Alter started collecting the works of women artists in the mid-1980s.

Robert Cozzolino, Sr. Curator & Curator of Modern Art, PAFA said, "It all came out of an epiphany she had visiting a big encyclopedic museum of world culture and she realized she hadn't seen a single work of a female artist on display."

She started a collection of Art by Women, with a mission of one day donating it to a public institution.

Over a 30 year period, she amassed close to 500 works with a broad range of styles and mediums.

Among them, abstract and realistic land and seascapes by Elizabeth Osborne?.a Philly born artist who studied at PAFA then taught there for 50 years.

"I remember one of the first galleries I tried to get in, in NY, they said you find it difficult being a woman," said Osborne."

Alter's collection includes some of the most influential female artists of the past 50 years?nearly all American and all living when she started collecting their work.

"So that they could know, while they were working, that there was a patron out there who was supporting them and interested in their work," said Cozzolino.

The Female Gaze showcases about half of the Lee Alter collection?. with galleries dedicated to self-portraiture, society's image towards women, politics, and nature.

The exhibit runs through April 7th, but works from the Alter collection will always be on display. For tickets, go to the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.