Mirror Mirror: Self-Portraits by Women Artists

Mirror Mirror: Self-Portraits by Women Artists

by Whitney Chadwick
     
 

The self-portrait has always been an artist's most intriguing vehicle for analysis and self-expression. The unusual freedom offered the artist by the dual occupation of the roles of both subject and creator has meant that self-portraiture has been of special value and interest in the work of artists. Mirror Mirror explores the history and function of the self-portrait…  See more details below

Overview

The self-portrait has always been an artist's most intriguing vehicle for analysis and self-expression. The unusual freedom offered the artist by the dual occupation of the roles of both subject and creator has meant that self-portraiture has been of special value and interest in the work of artists. Mirror Mirror explores the history and function of the self-portrait in the work of forty women artists, from the mid-seventeenth century to the present day. It covers works in all media, from oil painting to photography, from woodcut to ceramic sculpture, and includes self-portraits from such major artists as Mary Beale, Gwen John and Dame Barbara Hepworth, as well as lesser-known figures such as the Zinkeisen sisters, Madame Yevonde and Lee Miller. There are also portraits by women artists known primarily for their work in other media -- including the astonishing self-portrait relief by Susie Cooper. The works themselves appear chronologically, and include full biographical details of the artists. They are supported by essays from two leading art historians in this academic field: Whitney Chadwick, who discusses ideas of style and technique, including the artists' exploration of their own identity; and Frances Borzello, who presents the historical background and artistic context to the illustrated works.

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Editorial Reviews

KLIATT
Although most readers will be unfamiliar with most of the artists whose work is included in this exhibition catalogue, the insightful essays that accompany this collection of self-portraits drawn from Great Britain's National Portrait Gallery and from the collections of contemporary artists make this volume well worth reading. In exploring the history and function of the self-portrait, curator Liz Rideal and art historians Whitney Chadwick and Frances Borzello discuss the work of 40 women artists who have used their own image for self-expression. Each work is presented in a full-page reproduction, faced by a page of biographical information. The essays discuss style, technique, historical background, and art historical context as well as the issue of identity. Artists ranging from the mid-17th to the current century are represented through a variety of media, including oil paintings, photographs, prints, and ceramic sculpture. The catalogue includes a select bibliography, a listing of relevant web sites, and an index. This volume will appeal to students of art, art history, women's studies, and gender studies. The somewhat scholarly tone of these essays makes them most suitable to more mature students. KLIATT Codes: SA—Recommended for senior high school students, advanced students, and adults. 2001, Watson-Guptill, 120p. illus. bibliog. index.,
— Rhonda Cooper

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780823030712
Publisher:
Crown Publishing Group
Publication date:
04/28/2002
Pages:
120
Product dimensions:
7.94(w) x 9.46(h) x 0.41(d)

Meet the Author

Liz Redeal is an artist who, as Art Education Officer at the National Gallery in London, has curated exhibitions and run public programs for 20 years. She lives in London, England. Whitney Chadwick is Professor of Art at San Francisco State University. She has lectured and published widely in the areas of surrealism, feminism, and contemporary art. She lives in San Francisco, California. Frances Borzello writes on the social history of art. Her recent books include A World of Our Own: Women as Artists Since the Renaissance. She lives in London, England.

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