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Women Artists That Inspire Me

Updated: Feb 20, 2020

To finish out my Women's History Month celebrations, I wanted to feature women in art this week. Below I have listed some of my favorite women artists whose work I admire. Each has contributed significant pieces of artwork to the art historical canon, and I want to share their stories with you all.

Artemisia Gentileschi

Artemisia Gentileschi, Self-Portrait as the Allegory of Painting, c. 1638-39, oil on canvas, Royal Collection.

  1. Artemisia Gentileschi is an Italian Baroque painter whose style of painting is similar to that of Caravaggio, mainly because of her skill to manipulate dark and light in her work.

  2. Her specialty is to paint allegories or women from myths and the Bible.

  3. Gentileschi is the first woman member of the Accademia di Arte del Disegno in Florence.

Left: Artemisia Gentileschi, Judith Slaying Holofernes, c. 1620, oil on canvas, The Uffizi.

Right: Artemisia Gentileschi, Judith and her Maidservant, c. 1625, oil on canvas, Detroit Institute of Arts.

Rosa Bonheur

Anna Klumpke, Portrait of Bonheur, c. 1898, oil on canvas, The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

  1. Rosa Bonheur is a French artist, one of the most popular female painters of the 19th century.

  2. Her specialty is to paint animals, documenting them with realism and precision.

  3. Bonheur is known for challenging gender norms because she wore trousers and men's clothing. She believed, though, that this attire was practical when working with animals.

Rosa Bonheur, The Horse Fair, c. 1852-1855, oil on canvas, The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Rosa Bonheur, Ploughing in Nevers, c. 1849, oil on canvas, Musee d'Orsay

Marie Bracquemond

Marie Bracquemond, Self Portrait, c. 1870, oil on canvas, Private Collection.

  1. Marie Bracquemond is a French artist considered to be one of the three most famous women Impressionist painters alongside Mary Cassatt and Berthe Morisot.

  2. Her speciality is painting outdoors, known as plein air, and many of her works are full of rich colors.

  3. She met Gauguin, Monet, and Degas who all became her mentors and influences.

Left: Marie Bracquemond, Three Women with Parasols, c. 1880, oil on canvas, Musee d'Orsay.

Right: Marie Bracquemond, On the Terrace at Sevres, c. 1880, oil on canvas, Musee du Petit Palais.

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