This autumn The Cooper Gallery Barnsley is holding its new exhibition – Artists and Adventurers.
This exhibition showcases some of the best artworks in the Barnsley Museums catalogue. All the pieces in the exhibition were created by women. This may not seem all that fascinating on first inspection, but these artists were working at a time where women were expected to make beautiful, decorative art as a hobby rather than profession. Breaking away from these boundaries helped to sculpt the art world we have today.
Beside each piece in the exhibition is a description of the work and also the artist. This gives a larger insight into each woman’s past, the era she lived in and how she came to create. Over the last 150 years the world has changed drastically. Some of the artists were born in an era where they were seen as inferior to men. Some were lucky enough to have supportive male counterparts, allowing them to have a wider art education and encouraging them to create work. Others worked during the war and fought to maintain their positions afterwards, starting a huge shift in the workplace.
Although we now live in a more equal society women on the whole are under-represented in public art collections. This is because historically men were more celebrated and favoured over women and so their artwork became better known. This year marks 100 years since the ‘Representation of the People Act’. Many galleries are looking at how they have represented women in the past, and how they do so today.
Artists and Adventurers will be on display until Saturday 12th January 2019. As with all The Cooper Gallery exhibitions admission is free and donations are welcome. In the gallery are an on-site café (selling amazing cakes) and a shop with products relevant to the current exhibition.
The Cooper Gallery is open Monday – Saturday 10am – 4pm.