Women in the Arts

This tape features footage of a meeting of a collective representing the first female-owned art gallery in Chicago. The Artist's Residence of Chicago is a group comprised of all female artists with the goal of highlighting women's art in a male dominated field.

00:00Copy video clip URL This tape begins with a blue screen.

00:19Copy video clip URL Cut to footage from an art gallery. The videomakers do a rough take of the introduction for the piece.

01:08Copy video clip URL Cut to a second take for intro. The videomaker talks about the inception of the Artist’s Residence of Chicago and the opening of a women’s cooperative gallery in 1973. As the videomaker introduces the piece in voiceover, we see shots of the numerous pieces of artwork in the gallery. The gallery was conceptualized by two women, Fran Schoenwetter and Gerta Bernstein. Schoenwetter and Berstein talk about the formation of the gallery. The group of women hold a round table discussion about women’s art. This lasts for several minutes.

05:15Copy video clip URL The women are asked what is unique about being a female artist and the discrimination that arises in the art world. One women states that female artists aren’t taken as seriously as male artists. The group talks about the movement for “womanart” and work that is derived from feminist impulses. They also talk about their concern for professional and creative art and that it makes no difference whether it is created by men or women. Schoenwetter goes on to talk about the conditioning of a male viewpoint in art school.

07:48Copy video clip URL After a woman asks how long it will take for women and men to be equal in the art world, one woman responds by saying that she wants to be better than male artists. She goes on to talk about the sensual energies that arise from art. The women continue to discuss the issue in great detail.

10:22Copy video clip URL The women discuss the current proliferation of art cooperatives in major U.S. cities. They talks about the advantages and disadvantages of cooperative working. This lasts for several minutes.

15:14Copy video clip URL The women talk about the differences between mainstream art galleries and cooperative art galleries. They cite both positives and negatives in each. They also talk about art shows and the delicate balance in managing a show with fellow artists. This lasts for several minutes.

19:40Copy video clip URL The women talk about the dynamic within the cooperative. The women talk about the many roles the artists play at the cooperative. They go on to reminisce about some of the better group shows they’ve had in the past. This lasts for several minutes.

24:50Copy video clip URL When asked if there are any differences in being a part of a women’s gallery as opposed to a mixed group, the women discuss the issue in great detail. One woman states that if there were men in this particular cooperative, some members of the cooperative would become dominated. She also highlights the importance in the cooperative remaining exclusive to only women. “I want the support and the advantage of dealing with other women, and I think there is a sociological statement to be made in this country that women can work together, do work together, produce a very fine show, have a very fine gallery… We are a sociological fact as a group.” The women continue to analyze the issue. This lasts for the remainder of the tape.

28:40Copy video clip URL Tape ends.



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