Romaine Brooks (1874-1970):Romaine Brooks was born in Rome to a wealthy family but was abandoned as a child in New York. She was eventually placed under the care of her grandfather who sent her to school in Europe. Brooks studied art in Rome and Paris. In 1902 following the deaths of her both her mother and brother (both of whom were mentally unstable) Brooks inherited the family fortune which enabled her to independently pursue her art career and openly lesbian lifestyle with her companion of over forty years, the writer Natalie Barney. Brooks' portraits were primarily of women, and her palette of black and white reflect the influence of James MacNeil Whistler.
References:Romaine Brooks by Adelyn Breeskin
Between Me and Life:The Biography of Romaine Brooks by M. Secrest.
Web Sites:
Gallery of Paintings by Romaine Brooks
Biography and Paintings by Romaine Brooks



Leonora Carrington (born 1917-):Leonora Carrington was born in Lancashire, England, the daughter of a wealthy textile tycoon.She studied in Florence, Italy and in London. In 1937 she met and subsequently became involved romatincally with Max Ernst and the Surrrealist circle of artists of the period. It was her contact with Mexico, however, that provided her with the uniquely mystical and surrealist vision which informs her paintings.
References:
Leonora Carrington: il surrealismo al femminile by Tiziana Agnati
Leonora Carrington: The Mexican Years : 1943-1985 by Leonora Carrington
Visions: Stories About Women Artists by Leslie Sills
Web Sites:
Leonora Carrington
Leonora Carrington:Biography
Leonora Carrington



Elizabeth Catlett (born 1915/19-):Elizabeth Catlett was educated at Howard University after she was denied entry to the Carnegie Institute because she was African American. A distinguished sculptor, print-maker and painter, Catlett incorporates the social realism of Diego Rivera whose work she encountered while working as a muralist with the Federal Art Project of the Works Progress Administration in the 1930s. She received her master's degree in fine arts from the University of Iowa where she studied under Grant Wood. Wood encouraged her to draw her subject matter from her African American heritage. Catlett's works incorporate mother and child themes, portrayals of moments in African American history as well as historical African Americans such as Malcolm X and Harriet Tubman.
References:African American Sculptor Elizabeth Catlett:A Mighty Fist for Social Change by Betty LaDuke in Women Artists:Multicultural Visions, pp.127-144
Afrocentricism and Its Fruition in the Art of Elizabeth Catlett and Faith Ringgold by Frieda Tesfagioris in The Expanding Discourse:Feminism and Art History, pp.472-486.
Web Sites:
Elizabeth Catlett Showroom
Elizabeth Catlett on the Internet
Elizabeth Catlett Biography



Frida Kahlo (1910-1954): Frida Kahlo was born in Cayoacan, Mexico. She was always proud to identify the year of her birth with the year of the Mexican Revolution. This identification with her motherland was to permeate all her artistic sensibilities and to manifest itself in the colors, forms, icons that she integrated into At six, Frida Kahlo suffered from polio that was to leave her with a shrunken leg which was eventually amputated the year before she died. At fifteen she was involved in a terrible accident that required over thirty corrective operations of one sort or the other for the rest of her life. The accident also left her unable to bear children. Her constant experience of pain, her inability to have children coupled with her intense self-absorption were channeled into self-portraits and intense renditions of her psychological turmoil. Several critics have suggested that her art, particularly the multiple renditions of herself, were transformative acts of self-invention. Kahlo's stormy relationship and marriage with the much older and celebrated painter Diego Rivera is already the stuff of popular legend, and their life together surrounded by historical figures such as Leon Trotsky, Andre Breton, Isamu Noguchi and Nelson Rockefeller was infused by an aura of intellectual and artistic excitement.
References:Frida Kahlo by Malka Drucker
Frida Kahlo by Salom Grimberg; Frida:A Biography of Frida Kahlo by Heyden Herrera
Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, and Mexican Modernism by James Oles; Frida Kahlo: An Open Life by Raquel Tibol and Elinor Randall
Frida Kahlo:The Brush of Anguish by Martha Zamora.
Web Sites:
The World of Frida Kahlo
Frida Kahlo: Contemporaary Thoughts
Frida Kahlo on the Web



Laura Knight(1877-1970):Laura Knight was the daughter of a woman whose own intense ambition was to have been an artist. In her autobiography Laura Knight states that during the months before she was born,her mother prayed that "her own passion might influence the child in her womb." As a mere baby Laura Knight would "never be so content as with pencil and paper." Laura Knight studied at the Nottingham College of Arts and taught for several years while pursuing her own career as an artist. She became famous for her paintings of circus life, ballet dancers and gypsies. She exhibited at the Royal Academy and received official commissions during the Second World War. She was also the official artist for the Nuremberg Trials after the war. Laura Knight was made a Dame (the equivalent of a knighthood for men) by the king of England.
References:The Graphic Work of Laura Knight : Including a Catalogue Raisonne of Her Prints by G. Fredric Bolling
Oil Paint and Grease Paint: The Autobiography of Laura Knight
Dame Laura Knight by Caroline Fox; Laura Knight by Janet Dunbar
Web Sites
Dame Laura Knight on the Web
Paintings by Dame Laura Knight
Biography of Laura Knight


Tamara de Lempika (1898-1980): Tamara de Lempicka was born in Warsaw, Poland but her family moved to Russia. She fled the Russian Revolution in 1917 and went to live in to Paris where she received her training at Academie de la Grand Chaumiere. She also studied with Maurice Denis and Andre Lhote.Lempicka's paintings are rendered in the hard-edged, flattened surface style which has come to be synonymous with Art Deco. She came to the U.S. prior to the Second World War where her works were exhibited in numerous galleries. Lempicka died in Mexico in 1980.
References:Passion by Design by Kizette de Lempicka-Foxhall
Tamara De Lempicka 1898-1980 by Gilles Neret.
Web Sites:
Tamara de Lempicka
Paintings by Tamara de Lempicka
Tamara de Lempicka Biography


Grandma Moses, aka Anna Mary Robertson Moses (1860-1961): The artist popularly known as Grandma Moses was the farm wife who began painting in her seventies. When arthritis made it no longer possible for her to do embroidery she took up painting. As a self-taught artist, Grandma Moses painted the landscapes of her home surroundings in upstate New York. Many of her works are depictions of farm and domestic life in rural America. The simplicity of her artistic renditions has led to her being described frequently as a "folk" artist. Her paintings, personal history, and much quoted aphorisms now evoke a time of bucolic simplicity and charm of an America of days gone by.
References: Grandma Moses by Otto Kallir, Harry N. Abrams, Inc., 1973
The Year With Grandma Moses by W.Nikola-Lisa, Henry Holt, 2000
Grandma Moses in the Twenty-First Century by Jane Kallir, Yale University Press, 2001
Grandma Moses: An American Original by William C. Ketchum,Todtri Productions, 1996.
Web Sites: Grandma Moses Country
Grandma Moses aka Anna Mary Robertson
Grandma Moses at the Bennington Museum
Artcyclopedia


Georgia O'Keeffe (1887-1986):Georgia O'Keeffe is perhaps the most famous woman artist of the twentieth century.She was born in Wisconsin and receive her education in Wisconsin, the Art Institute of Chicago and at the New York Art Student's League. The turning point came in 1915 when she destroyed her extant paintings of derivative art and embarked on a trajectory of abstractionism. She was discovered and promoted by the distinguished photographer Alfred Stieglitz whom she eventually married. Her enormous sensuous close ups of flowers and stark renditions of skulls are now universally famous. Her paintings are generally characterized by asymmetrical compositions, flat colors and spare forms. O'Keeffe lived to be almost a hundred and in later life when her eyesight failed, she worked in clay.
References:Georgia O'Keeffe (American Women of Achievement) by Michael Berry and Matina S. Horner
The Art and Life of Georgia O'Keeffe by Jan Garden Castro
Georgia O'Keeffe by Charles C. Eldredge
O'Keeffe: Stieglitz and the Critics, 1916-1929 by Barbara Buhler Lynes
Georgia O'Keeffe:Getting to Know the World's Greatest Artist by Mike Venezia.
Web Sites:O'Keeffe and Siegliz
Georgia O'Keeffe: Biography and Images
O'Keeffe The Young Artist
Georgia O'Keeffe on the Internet
The Georgia O'Keeffee Online Gallery



Eva Schulze-Knabe (1907-1976):Eva Schulze-Knabe was a painter and printmaker.She studied in Leipzig and Dresden and was married to the artist Fritz Schulze. Both Schulze-Knabe and her husband were activists in the pro-communist student movement in Germany in the 1930s. They were arrested and imprisoned for their political activites when Hitler came to power but were acquitted and released after serving in prison for a year. Their anti-facist activists and support of the war in Spain made both husband and wife persona non grata in Germany. As such, they were prohibited from exhibiting their work as artists and were forced to undertake commercial work such as making posters and advertisements for a living. In 1942, because of his refusal to serve in the german military, Fritz Schulze was executed for treason.
References:Seeing Ourselves: Women's Self-Portraits by Frances Borzello, p.137.