Sometime in the late 1970s, Miriam Schapiro and Elaine Lustig Cohen gathered a group of feminist artists and writers around my dining room table with a proposal: “Let’s form a consortium to buy the work of the Russian Constructivist women.”
I do not trust my memory. I have no notes or photographs. There may be errors in this essay. I was 29, working at the Tamarind Lithography Institute in Albuquerque. I asked everyone if he/she knew Georgia O’Keeffe and whether it would be possible to meet her. Like many young women artists, I was searching for role models.
In this century, the Museum of Modern Art has presented a series of exhibitions of women artists from other countries: Lygia Clark, Isa Genzken, Alina Szapocznikow, Sanja Ivekovic, Marina Abramovic, Marlene Dumas, Pipilotti Rist, Lucy McKenzie. But very often, the accompanying texts place them in an artistic context comprised solely of their husbands, boyfriends and guy colleagues — as if their acclaim had separated them from their female peers.