Self-Portrait as a Female Martyr is a painting created by Artemisia Gentileschi in around 1615. The artwork portrays Gentileschi as Saint Catherine of Alexandria, bound and tortured on a broken wheel with iron spikes. Experts suggest that Gentileschi used herself as a model for her paintings, making this painting an opportunity to display her skills as a female artist.
Gentileschi was a prominent artist during the Baroque art movement, especially known for her depiction of “heroines” who embodied strength and bravery. The painting is one of two by Gentileschi that employed oil on wood and is currently held in a private collection in the United States.
This painting signifies the theme of self-portraiture and martyrdom during the Baroque art movement. Through this composition, Gentileschi portrays a sense of endurance and resistance in the face of pain and suffering, encapsulating her ideals of feminist strength. By using her own image as a model for her artworks, Gentileschi was able to challenge the male-dominated artistic conventions of the time, and show the world the capabilities of female artists.