PRESS RELEASE: Making Her Mark

Marking Her Mark Image
Contact: Anna Dempsey or Allison J. Cywin

For Immediate Release

Making Her Mark
“I didn’t want to be a woman artist. I just wanted to be an artist” – Isabel Bishop, 1982

(April 12-29, 2017)

Making Her Mark is an exhibition highlighting late nineteenth-century paintings, illustrations, books, and sculptures by Rhode Island women artists and that their contribution to American modern culture.

The exhibition focuses on a group of women artists who were instrumental in the establishment of one of the first American art clubs, The Providence Art Club, to accept women as equal members, active board members and artistic colleagues.  Over the course of the later half of nineteenth century women artists, including Providence Art Club artists Rosa Peckham, Emily McGary Selinger, Helen Watson Phelps, Emma Swan, Charlotte Gilman, Mary C. Wheeler, and Sophia Pitman worked, traveled, and exhibited alongside their male contemporaries.

Many of these women exhibited their artworks in salons and galleries in both the United States and abroad—including Paris and London. These remarkable women, artists, suffragettes, art instructors, authors, and community leaders helped to shape and to contribute to the regional and national artistic and cultural conversation. This exhibition celebrates these women artists and their contribution to American history.

The exhibit is part of the UMass Dartmouth art history capstone experience, one in which students work in teams and apply their academic and professional knowledge to a real world experience. This is the 6th year that Dr. Anna Dempsey and Allison J. Cywin have directed a group of upperclass students to execute a professional museum quality exhibition and publication. This student-run exhibition explores modern American visual culture of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, with a specific focus on feminine artistic communities in Providence.  The students thank the Providence Art Club for their generous support.

The exhibition runs from April 12 thru April 29, 2017 at the Main Campus Art Gallery located in the College of Visual & Performing Arts, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. The address is 285 Old Westport Road.  Please park in lot 7, which is adjacent to the College of Visual and Performing Arts.

We invite the public to attend the opening reception and gallery talk on Wednesday, April 12 from 4p.m. to 6p.m. The public exhibition hours are Monday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, please contact, Dr. Anna Dempsey,  and Allison J. Cywin. You can also call the gallery at (508) 999-8550.

Photo Courtesy: Frances Benjamin Johnston


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