Tuesday, July 28, 2009

120 Years Old and Still Going Strong

image courtesy of noyesmuseum.org

By Brianne Harrison

In the late 19th century, when the art world was even more male dominated than it is now, five female artists--Grace Fitz-Randolph, Edith Mitchell Prellwitz, Adele Frances Bedell, Anita C. Ashley, and Elizabeth S. Cheever—formed the Women’s Art Club after they were shut out of the National Academy of Design and the Society of American Artists. The Women’s Art Club grew by leaps and bounds over the years, joined by such artistic luminaries as Mary Cassatt, Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, and Alice Neel. In 1941, the organization was renamed the National Association of Women Artists (NAWA), the moniker it retains to this day.

This year, NAWA is 120, and just as strong as ever as it continues to support women artists through exhibitions, merit prizes, lectures, scholarships, art demonstrations, and awards. To celebrate the organization’s and the artists’ accomplishments, the Noyes Museum of Art in Oceanville is staging an exhibition of works from 47 members of NAWA. Works run the gamut from painting to printmaking to sculpture by Alice Chan, Judith Cantor, Lolita Bronzini, Eleanor Golstein, Pam Cooperm and others. The show runs through the end of August.

If you can’t make it to the special exhibition, NAWA maintains a permanent collection at the Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers University. The collection houses works that cover NAWA’s entire history, from its founding in 1889 through the present day. For more information, visit zamweb.rutgers.edu

The Noyes Museum of Art
733 Lily Lake Rd.

Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum
71 Hamilton St.
New Brunswick


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