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exam 2 feminist art history notes

by: kmschemmel

exam 2 feminist art history notes AHS 265-1

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This is exam is on Wednesday, March 2. These notes cover everything we have talked about in class that will be for the second exam (over Baroque, Impressionism, and Surrealism). It also has infor...
Feminist Art History
Dr. Natalie Phillips
Study Guide
Feminist Art History
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This 15 page Study Guide was uploaded by kmschemmel on Tuesday March 1, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to AHS 265-1 at Ball State University taught by Dr. Natalie Phillips in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 42 views. For similar materials see Feminist Art History in Art at Ball State University.


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Date Created: 03/01/16
Exam 2 Feminist Art History Monday Feb. 8 :th Women of the Baroque th Baroque Art 16 century - Women of this time didn’t have it much better than women of the Renaissance - Strong dramatic lighting, spot-like, emotion - Artemisia Gentileschi: o Orazio Gentileschi: Artemisia’s father  Was a male artist and pushed his daughter to become successful in the arts, taught her everything he knew was a child prodigy- around 12 when started painting, if not earlier)  Artemisia painted a lot of subjects, but not male nudes  Artemisia and her fathers art were compared a lot  Artemisia’s were thought to be more complex o Orazio Gentileschi, Judith and Her Maidservant 1621- 24 o The Rape Trial 1612 (lasted 7 months in late 1612) (rape occurred in early 1612)  She addresses this tragedy in her artwork, but eventually she moves away from this tragedy  Man named Agostino Tassi, and he came to work for Orazio (he did landscapes and background- hired to do)  Cosimo Quorli (friend of Orazio’s)  Stole one of her paintings  Tried to rape Gentileschi, but failed  Helped Agostino plan visits to her house when her father was absent  Agostino Tassi: was a terrible person.  “Agostino was convicted rapist, who had previously served time in jail...middle of the trail.”  “ Agostino was obsessed…”  “Artemisia testified that on the pretext of looking at the painting near the bedroom… which Agostino demanded.” o He raped her first, and then he said he would marry her. But ended up not following through though in which her father then took him to court for damaging his daughter.  “During the trial, Artemisia…continually responded, “it is true, it is ture.”” o While she is tied up to some contraption (torture- her hands are her life), she continually said that he raped her  Agostino Tassi’s…”  “Over a seven months time period…and her house was a bordello”  “Unfortunately, the last few pages….false witness…One month after the trial...few years later.” o He did get jail time but only a few months. Even thought the Gentileschi’s won the trial, Artemisia lost because she was forced to move and marry- but she eventually got divorced and lived alone, and was still able to be a successful artist. o Artemisia Gentileschi, Susanna and the Elders, 1610 (17 years old)  Possible that she painted it after the rape but he dated it earlier to make her seem more talented. But  The Apocrypha: considered by part of the bible by Catholics but not by others. Provided a lot of great “father” for her paintings because they told a lot of stories about women- inspirational for her.  About a virtuous women named Susanna; she goes to take a bath outdoors, but little does she know there are two elders that happened to catch her and try to black mail her into sleeping with them. If she doesn’t they are going to go to the village and tell everyone otherwise. But she didn’t give in, despite the pressure from them.  She worked with female nude but not male nude: the face of Susanna has aspects of her own. So it is also assumed that the two men in the picture are of Cosimo and Agostino. So she is depicting a story of her own experience.  Colors:  White cloth- associate with purity and virtue  Red/darker colors on man- lust, disturbing aspects of harassment on the women, etc.  In other artworks the women is displayed as the woman seducing the men (sexual), whereas in Artemesia’s painting she displays the story as the women being harassed.  She painted depictions of this story multiple times o Judith and Holofernes: 1611-1612  Also comes from the Apocrypha  Judith: virtuous, Jewish woman  Holofernes: villian  They set up camp, and clearly going to attack in the morning. Judith and her servant goes to his tent that night with alcohol and act as if they are going to seduce him. But, once he was drunk, she was to cut off his head. In which, his army would then wake up to this and leave- she saved her village. o Gentileschi, Judith and Holofernes, 1614-1620  More violent  She depicted this scene various times, but dealt with different times of the story  Compared to Caravaggio: Judith and Holofernes, 1598-99 o Artemisia’s depiction of this story is very violent and on purpose/determined; whereas in Caravaggio’s she seems more worried and not as confident- almost like cutting bread= not as believable. o Artemisia’s servant is young, strong and helpful whereas Caravaggio’s is old and feeble- not able to help o Caravaggio’s blood from the head is almost stringy and orange but in Artemisia’s is disturbingly realistic o Caravaggio’s is as god is helping her through it but Artemisia’s is very self driven and confident o Artemisia’s is directed against her rapist clearly. The red cloth in her painting (over his private) rather than behind. o Artemisia Gentileshci, Lucretia, 1620  Time when she moves on from her rape and no longer bases her paintings over her experience with her rape.  But she shows very powerful women instead now  “at night Sextus (king of rome) entered her bedroom by stealth…had caught her having adulterous sex”  She can still identify with this story  “Sextus returned to camp…present kneening and lamenting.”  She is raped like gentileschi, but instead of being his wife she kills herself  Powerful woman who takes her own fate into her own hands o Jael and Sisera, 1620, Artemisia Gentileschi  Strong women getting revenge here  “Sisera was a cruel Canaanite leader who ruled the Israelites for twenty years…pinned his head to the ground.”  Similar story as Judith. She is trying to save her people and killing this guy in order to do that.  If look at face of Sisera, looks different than tassi is represented...and thought to look like Caravaggio instead.  Caravaggio was her mentor, she seems to be suggesting that she is surpassing her master and doesn’t need him anymore so “killing” him off. (similar to Sononisba Anguisolla’s painting)  Thought that was depicting either Tassi or Caravaggio  Believed it is Caravaggio due to her past paintings that suggested her experience with rape o Artemisia Gentileschi, Cleopatra, 1621-1622  Depicts her face as Cleopatra’s  Moment when Cleopatra kills herself to keep her dignity instead of being taken and humiliated  Artemisia painted this subject of Cleopatra several time  With very interesting facial expressions; she also shows the Asp on her (arm) o Artemisia Gentileschi, self-portrait as a female martyr; 1615  Martyr: someone who sacrifices themselves for a cause  Looking directly at viewer, she is subjectifying herself not objectifying  More recognizing features of her o Female Martyr, 1615  Attributes of the saints:  St. Barbara: she is usually depicted in art standing net to or holding the tower in which she was imprisoned, with a chalice, the palm of martyrdom, and feather, and or a cannon  Associating with qualities of virtue, martyrdom, strength, etc. very consciously and has a purpose in mind: not just a women who is a wife, she is much more and much different than that  Men did this too: Durer associated himself with Christ o Artemisia Gentileschi, Self-portrait as the Allegory of Paintings 1630s:  She isn’t just sitting there staring blankly ahead, but she is actively painting: her showing this act is unusual especially for women; and the necklace she is wearing is a symbol of painting itself- a sort of marker for her  Women were not supposed to be painters: but she is claiming this attribute and position - Film: Artemisia, directed by Agnes Merlet o Mary Garrard and Gloria Steinem (historians) protested against the premier of this movie and were extremely upset that practically all the facts are wrong in this movie, and is highly distorted. o D o Her teacher is actually her father, but in the film Agostino is seen as more of her mentor and lover rather than a rapist- and portrayed as extremely important in her career (but wasn’t in real life) o Meeting Agostino- The Balcony Scene  Agostino is placed much higher than her representing the power he has over her (Romeo and Juliet reference- love story) o The Rape Scene and the Trial  At the time is was shown as a rape- she said no so there wasn’t consent but it wasn’t exactly considered a rape scene for it seemed as they both wanted it  Author made it seem ambiguous  His apology afterward was also weird. Dd  The author set her up at interested in sex, etc. so made it seem more like she wanted it rather than a rape.  Later on she claims that is wasn’t rape and that he pleasured her.  He is portrayed as more of a nice guy: scene before rape when she was posing him for painting and she was “on top” of him, he stopped it. Then with the trial he claims that he raped her, just to save her. When she is being tortured to tell the truth (strings around her hands) he said to stop and to punish him, she doesn’t deserve this.  o In real life Artemisia’s father was a good guy and trying to save her, but in the movie he is portrayed as a bad guy by claiming that Agostino raped her, and goes to trial with it- leading them to have to split apart forever. th Women and Impressionism- 19 century - Impressionism was based only on lived experiences (no imagination or religious scenes, etc.) if you haven’t experienced much in life, you had a very limited subject matter - “The Gaze” o Becomes very important…dawn of vision and reality o Subject VS. Object - Baron Haussmann: o During this time he was known for redesigning the city of Paris (the Housemanization of Paris)  Changed a lot of thing. Brought about this era a vision- power.  Paris before Haussmann was very confusing and crowded. No sewage system. Very little sunshine in streets. Enormous risk of fire due to tight wooden houses.  Baron tore down a ton of buildings, redesigned the streets, etc.  He installed a sewage system. Tore down the clutter reducing the risk of fire, brought more light and air into the city; and now has wide boulevards.  Paris became more a middle and upper class city, and the lower class had to move out- not a compassionate solution but it worked. o He brought light and air into the city, brought nature and parks to the people = and affected and had an enormous impact on artist and their vision of the world (light) - looked at the world around them and actively painted their surroundings and how the light affected them. o Also brought a lot of paintings depicted upper class figures. o If you had a privileged vision, your artwork had an advantage (ex. Ballerinas practicing and rehearsals by Degas) – the things average people didn’t have access too - Pierre Auguste Renoir: o Famous for beautiful party scenes and little girls, also did a lot of female nudes o Auguste Renoir, Nude in a Chair  Denies her subjectivity by hiding the face (lack of power of the gaze) but yet the viewer is allowed to gaze on her body and do with her what they want. Painting is not about her personality but rather portrays her as an object. o Auguste Renoir, Female Nude  Shows woman with eye contact, but with a seductive gaze rather than a powerful gaze. - Edouard Manet: o Challenged the category of the female nude o Edouard Manet, Olympia  Female nude, but has inserted several things that challenged race, slavery, and gender, etc.  Title is the name of a character in a play, “Olympe” that is a prostitute. In the painter, you the viewer are the customer and just walked into the room. Her facial expression can be read as unimpressed, strong and independent, bored, almost judgmental,  Real women model, Victorine Meurent, Manet’s favorite model  Composition is based off of another nude painting:  Titian, Venus of Urbino, 16 thcentury  Manet, however changes things: o Women is more stiff (pleasure to business) o Dog to a cat= symbolic of women in painting- dog= calming, cat= does not want you there o Facial expression: Venus= has a seductive head tilt, with a flirtatious welcoming expression o Lighting: Manet= washed out and blindingly white; Venus’s is rendered and welcoming glowing haze like color. o Venus draws attention to genitalia, where Olympia is covering hers from view o Flowers: unappreciated gift- not romantic transition- just business= Olympia; Venus= fertility symbol o A nude figure to him is as if they are supposed to be without clothes- normal; but a naked figure is someone who is expected to have clothes on but your shocked that they don’t  Venus’s seen as a nude  Olympia’s seen as naked  A completely different mood even thought the composition is very similar  Obvious that he is trying to dismantle to traditional female nude representation  Relationship between figures: race; the way the gaze is instructed is important= Olympia is more important than the servant because the servant is looking at her- and then Olympia is looking at us the viewer. o He exaggerated the color difference of their skin so bring up other ideas= race, slavery  The Flaneur:  A character type. Described in a number of different ways; some key terms would be “stroller, idler”  A fashionable guy that goes around and kind of just looks at things; he can go into lower or upper class events or areas and not stand out- observer of the world  Plays out in impressionist paintings. Ex. Manet’s ballet paintings; prostitutes; upper class leisure; working class  Walter Benjamin  No such thing as a Flaneus; because women could not do it; women would be to noticeable due to their restrictions and limitations- women could not around by themselves, they were to be escorted by father or husband, unless were a prostitute. Always described in relation to another person, not as an individual herself.  Therefore, male impressionist were better off due to being able to see more things in the world.  D  D  d o Griselda Pollock, “Modernity and the Spaces of Feminity” (reading)  Explains how limited women were and how they were portrayed  Makes point about Flenoir and women and their lack of freedom to look and explore like men - Marry Cassatt: o Very wealth, more power than upper classmen, she was likthManet- very insightful and see through the artifice of 19 century artwork and pick away from it o She depicts motherly scenes of mother and child. But not always satisfied than that- wants to do more than just take care of home and be a mother o Mary Cassatt, Little Girl in a Blue Armchair  Challenged idea that women should stay at home and take care of children, etc. and not do anything else.  Ex. due to big blue chairs- seemed very cramped and overwhelming – domestic nightmare  The little girl looks very unhappy and bored. Doesn’t want to be there. Like she is daydreaming about playing outside, etc. rather than being inside in a dress.  The dog- bored and asleep.  She sneaks in critique of the past faces. Suggest that not entirely happy with just having to be a mother and take care of home. o Mary Cassatt, A cup of Tea  Dark clothes, the furniture overwhelms and traps the figures; very boring and looks like want to be somewhere else  Background wallpaper: looks very prisonlike, or repetitive resembling there very repetitive daily lives.  Stripes are very prominent in women artwork- clothes, walls, furniture, benches, etc. = suggestive of being trapped, bored, and repetitive. - Berthe Marisot: o Does tender images of motherhood like Mary Cassatt o Berthe Marisot, Portrait of the Artist’s Mother and Sister  No strips, but does portray trapped by furniture and boredom  Mother is reading and child is sitting there; like the mother has accepted the lifestyle but the child is staring off into space and dreaming of something else- wants to do more in life (furthered this meaning through the color of the clothes they are wearing)  Composition: the mothers big black dress is almost like consuming the painting- or blocking the way for the daughter to get out. o Berthe Morisot, Villa at the Seaside  Outdoor image, but women are still in check. The woman has her daughter with her (not alone). And she is still not fully out in the world- she is trapped by a fence (on a porch) and does not have free reign of the landscape- limited (confined to only part of world). Can see the outside but not technically in the outside- always held back by gate, bench, or window, etc.  Was very aware of her position in the world and was not satisfied with it, so portrayed their views in their paintings - Male VS. Female Portraiture: o Edouard Manet, Portrait of Zacharie Astrue  Zacharie is an artist and a write, and Manet emphasizes that  He is portrayed as subject- all knowing and gazing at you. Has a de-emphasis on his body but focused on his hands and head (relates to his job) so emphasized the intellectual parts of his body and deemphasized the less important parts.  On the table: surrounded by books and paper, and an unpeeled orange= resemble his knowledge  Women in background: facing away, and working. Seen as a secondary person- not important. Sometimes not even seen as real person (could be a painting). o Auguste Renoir, La Loge  Male painting a women  Compared to Portrait of Zacharie Astrue  The women’s chest and face are more framing and eye-catching (fertility and sexuality) and her lips are really bright= they highlight her body  She does make eye contact but more of a flirtatious gesture than a powerful one  She is with a companion- proper woman- escort- they both have opera glasses on in the La Loge (upper balcony seats)  The man is actively using his binoculars- gave him a more powerful human eye- expanded his vision and gave him the power of the gaze due to the woman not using hers. In addition, he is probably looking at another woman rather than the opera. o Mary Cassatt, In the Loge  Made a counterpoint to this image  She references La Loge within her title.  She is depicting herself at the opera; looking through the binoculars at the opera= she has the magnified power of the gaze that she has given to herself  She depicts the woman as dressed more modestly; body is deemphasized; her head and her hands are highlighted (like in Zacharie’s tools). And the woman is by herself, or is with someone but cropped out of picture- so seen as an individual.  She knows that even though she can represent herself like that; she is still objectified to the male gaze as well= depicted in painting by a man with binoculars looking at her (reference to Renoir’s painting). So even though she has the power of the gaze she still is being in check with the males power of gaze. Women and Surrealism: 1920s and 1930s (highpoint) - Women as mediums- Automatic Writing o Thought of as channeling the subconscious or spirits; and women were seen as of that- their only rule  So it reduces them to that one aspect of who they are o Saw women as magical creatures - Salvador Dali, The Virgin of Guadalupe o Of his wife Gala o Not a realistic image of a women; saw them as muses or models and not active people within art; still considered objects o Essentializing: reduced to one or two essential characteristic and the rest of their humanity is denied to them- not individual humans - Women Surrealists: o Not in Europe though; women not allowed to enter this field even if had close relationship to male painter o Surrealist:  Leonora Carrington; Dorothea Tanning; Remedios Varo; Frida Kahlo, etc. o Frida Kahlo:  Was able to be a painter because of her husband Diego Rivera  She was even subjectified to the women stereotypes  Didn’t become famous until later off in her life  Even when in US, she wore traditional Mexico clothing; always trying to be in touch with her identity, etc. and things that made her an individual human= stood out.  She was very proud and confident, even with a very odd beauty about her.  Tehuana Dress: type of clothing she wore. Very distinct to Central America, and very bright. Becomes a symbol of her identity in her paintings  Her career started from a tragic accident when she was younger. A trolley with a bus and a pole went through her pelvis damaging her reproductive organs.  Caused her pain throughout the rest of her life  Painted when she was bed ridden; self portraits  Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera  He was a Mexican muralists  He was just like Frida belief wise. Politically, etc.  They had a troubled marriage; he had affairs, and they did get divorced at one point.  Frida Kahlo, Self-Portrait with Cropped Hair  She did this after he cheated on her with his sister and they get divorced  She cut off her hair and dressed as a man  Uses clothing to show independence and also a declaration of her independence from him= projecting power. o Mexican Retablos: Mexican art form; done very quickly, particular format to it – distinguished foreground and background. Made when someone was sick to say a prayer for them (Frida made work like these) Usually have an image on top and then text underneath saying what you’re praying for  Votive: a continual prayer- it is always praying for them.  Frida Kahlo, Self-Portrait With Hand Earrings  Always represents herself with the power of the gaze and a powerful individualism depicted within them  Her hands starting getting “gangues” and her hand may need to be amputated but the doctor found a way to not have to do this- so this painting is a way to thank her doctor for saving her hand.  Has Mexican earrings on: reference to a Mexican folk tradition: o Tin objects called Milagros: cheap little charms that you can put on something. And also votive images- keep on or close to you and they are a form of prayer… keep them focused on where you need them the most.  Has infusions of her religion in her paintings o Christianity: a thorn necklace bleeding- referencing Christ’s crown of thorns = showing her pain and suffering, but in the next life she will be free o Aztec religion:  Goddess: Coatlicue = Gave birth to the moon, stars, the god of the sun and war She is also known as the Patron saint of women who died in childbirth  Referenced through the blood on the thorn necklace  Frida Kahlo, The Little Dear  You see her suffering as a dear o Dear references the Aztec religion o And symbolizes the right foot: in which her right food was crushed in the bus accident and right light being fractured- and the amputation of her leg later on in her life.  Reference to St. Sebastian (who was shot with arrows but survived) Frida, Directed by Julie Taymor, 2002. - A lot of reference to Mexican heritage - But also references to the day of the dead celebration - After accident o And full circle after her death o Resembled by skeleton and skulls - Death scene: fireworks and fire to resemble death - Color symbolism: o Red: blood and pain The house from dull to bright blue: when her and Diego get back together Wedding: decided with a bright green dress and red scarf around arms Always wore bright and vibrant colors: depicted in artwork too - Artemisia by Agnes Merlet vs. Frida by Julie Taymor - Dressing as a man/ acting as a man: o Artemisia: scene when Agostino mistakes her as a boy when she is painting one day- sets stage for relationship to come o Frida: shows her as more powerful; when she outdrinks Diego and dances with another woman and takes the lead; dresses as a man in a portrait; painting when she gets divorced from Diego and cuts her hair, she drinks and smokes; scene with a gourd and uses it as a phallic o She owns these masculine traits as a source of power but Artemisia is more of just a mistake - Discovering sexuality: o Artemisia: scene lying in sand hoping one day she will have that experience o Frida: in closet with her young lover- she acts upon the sexuality instead on the strange creepy interest in it like Artemisia; - Spying scene: o Artemisia: when Agostino is having sexual intercourse with a prostitute- when caught she runs away scared o Frida: when with friends and catches Diego with naked woman, when they get caught her friends run away but she stands up- she then says calls him a “Pansone!” (fatso) and that she is just trying to keep him honest= she is independent, bold, and not scared - Scaffold scene: o Artemisia: she has sketches and he remains up above looking down at her= Agostino remains the more powerful figure o Frida: he is up above at first and tells her to come up to talk to him, but she tells him to come down to her and surprisingly he does come down to her level to talk to her and look at her paintings - Gold Dust/ trolley accident: o From guy on the trolley who was an artist. The gold was for the ceiling of the opera house o The trolley accident was the birth of her being an artist; so during this scene when she is bloody and impaled, the gold falling down on her is a symbolism of the birth of her being an artist, etc. o Boy with the bird: when the accident happens the bird flies away. Can symbolize the freeing of her soul o Gives her seat up for the women with her baby: shows kindness, and in a way giving up her capabilities of having children for herself o Fruit falls onto ground: symbolized fertility and it is dropped on the ground and bruised and damaged- along with her fertility now - Rape scene: o Artemisia: resembles birth of her as an artist through their relationship- uncomfortable positive moment for her o Frida: accident scene parallels the rape scene from Artemisia; says that the doctor that the pole took her virginity (metaphoric parallel)- start of her artistic career too. -


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