The Changing Perception of Women in Art

As an expert in the field of art history, I have closely studied the portrayal of women in art throughout history. It is no secret that women have been idolized and objectified in art, but their contributions to the visual arts have often been overlooked and underrepresented. In this article, I will explore how the perception of women in art has evolved over time. In the past, art did not accurately reflect real body types, but rather those that were deemed ideal by society. This often meant a fuller body with smaller breasts.

Women were painted as objects of desire, rather than individuals with their own agency and talents. The exclusion of women from the art world can be traced back to deep-rooted sexism. They were seen as subordinate beings, inferior to their male counterparts and unable to dominate in the arts. This led to their exclusion from important or prominent roles in the art world. The feminist movement brought attention to this issue, with protests at major art institutions such as the Whitney Museum of American Art and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. As an expert in analyzing women in art behind the canvas, I can confirm that there have been significant changes compared to the Renaissance era when women were completely expelled from the scene and excluded from art guilds controlled by men. One major turning point was the introduction of the New Deal Art Program, which brought the art world under the jurisdiction and sponsorship of the American government.

This marked a shift in cultural attitudes towards women in the arts. Italy also began to recognize and support highly qualified female artists, rather than relegating them to a passive role of being represented in works of art. Despite these changes, there is still a long way to go. The current figures of women in the art world do not reflect the values and majority opinion of society. However, I am optimistic that with the continued efforts of feminist artists like Cindy Sherman, women will be represented as much as men in art. The rise of new women in society also inspired a new wave of female artists.

This explains the sudden increase in the presence of women in art. However, it took longer for the great masters of the 19th century to adapt to these new standards for women, as they directly contradicted their ideals of what constituted great art. One pioneering essay that stands out in both feminist art history and theory is Linda Nochlin's "Why Have There Been No Great Women Artists?" This essay sheds light on the social change that was beginning to take place at that time. It also ties in with the chronology of the feminist movement in the art world, which brought greater awareness to the inequality faced by women.