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"I used the menu on the left of the page, and was at first disappointed that a person with such talent as Remedios Varo would be left out of an archive the size of yours. I was then further annoyed to see a listing for "women artists." I grimaced and reluctantly clicked on the link. Still no Remedios Varo, and the fact that there were merely 11 women listed didn't help to alleviate any annoyance.
"Remedios Varo is not my discrepancy. The fact that out of approximately 250 artists listed, only 11 were female, is my problem. Doing the math at the top of my head, that's less than 5%. In your "welcome" section, you say that the intended use of your site is for educational purposes. How can anyone fairly learn about art when the majority of the population is not appropriately accounted for?
"I speak not only as a feminist, but as a person who tries to promote things that the cultural milieu has neglected, due to unreasonable and uncountable circumstances. I ask only that you take into consideration these circumstances when making an archive of artists to be used for educational purposes.
1. Any site showing Varos had better be prepared for the greedy Varos estate. Her estate is represented by a corporation which hired a lawyer to threaten to sue me if I did not remove copyrighted images by artists such as Magritte, Picasso, Dali (and women such as Hannah Hoch and Natalia Gontcharova, who were previously included on the site)...so Varos was removed from my "to do" list. If you think not having more women is bad, imagine the greed that results in incomplete representation of giants such as Picasso and Dali! OUR cultural heritage, not THEIR cash cows! But I digress...
2. I had no "Women Artists" listing until women kept complaining about the lack thereof. Now I get complaints from other women about having it. I decided to keep it: people who want it can have it available, those who are offended can ignore it.
3. The Varos copyright situation is obviously germane to ANY 20th century woman artist (as they are under copyright until 70 years (!) after their death), and such greed on the part of the estates will indeed hamper an appreciation for art made by women. And, unfortunately, it was only in the 20th century when the mass of women became eligible (legally as well as culturally) to receive the highest levels of artistic training. Prior to that, they were simply marginalized to the extent that they COULD NOT BECOME great artists. And going back to the Baroque to find some second rate woman artist, then trumpeting her as equivalent to the greatest artists of her time, is not only wrong, but a disservice to ALL artists, male and female. Indeed, the irony of only 5% female representation is that the LACK of female artists is the most ELOQUENT TESTIMONY to hundreds of years of disfranchisement and neglect of their potential to become great artists.
4. If you think it would help things to put this kind of disclaimer on my "Women Artists" page, please let me know. I'll even take out the CAPITAL LETTERS! ;-)