500 Years of Women Artists (55+)

Artemisia Gentileschi’s paintings celebrate powerful women who take matters into their own hands and triumph. Rosalba Carriera, working in Venice during the rococo period, elevated the dry pastel from an inconsequential medium to an artist’s tool, producing over 200 portraits in numerous European courts. More recently Edmonia Lewis, as a 19th- century African-American and Native American sculptor, overcame prejudice to achieve popular and critical acclaim. Dorothea Lange created iconic images of the Depression and remains a major influence on documentary photography.

We will explore the life and works of these and many other women artists from around the world and through the centuries, ranging from Anna Golubkina, the Russian sculptor in whose honour a crater on Venus is named, to Canada’s own expressionist painter, Emily Carr.

Please note that enrollment in this course is reserved for adults 55+.

Currently not available for registration.

What will I learn?

Week 1: Mannerist

Paintings by:

Properzia De’ Rossi c. 1490-1530; Sofonisba Anguissola, 1530-1625; Lucia Anguissola, 1536-65; Lavinia Fontana, 1552-1614; Barbara Longhi, 1552-1638; Marietta Robusti, 1554-90; Jan Hemessen, c. 1500-66; Catharina (Caterina) Hemessen, c. 1528-1578.

For reference:

Tintoretto [properly: Jacopo Robusti] c. 1518-1594; Jan Sanders Van Hemessen, c. 1500-1566

Week 2: Baroque

Paintings by:

Isabella Catanea Parasole, c. 1570-1620; Fede Galizia, 1578-1630; Artemisia Gentileschi, 1593-1653; Elisabetta Sirani, 1638-65; Judith Leyster, 1609-60.

For reference:

Caravaggio [properly: Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio], c. 1571-1610; Orazio Gentileschi, 1563-1639; Anthony van Dyck, 1599-1641; Andrea Sirani Giovanni, 1610-70

Week 3: Neo-Classical, Romantic and Rococo

Paintings, sculptures and models by:             

Luisa Roldán (La Roldana), 1652-1706; Rosalba Carriera, 1675-1757; Louise Elisabeth Vigée-Lebrun, 1755-1842; Rachel Ruysch, 1664-1750.

For reference:

Francisco Goya, 1746-1828; Pedro Roldán, 1624-99  

Week 4: The 19th Century I

Paintings by:

Anna Claypoole Peale, 1791-1878; Margareta Angelica Peale, 1795-1882; Sarah Miriam Peale, 1800-85; Mary Jane Peale, 1827-1902; Sarah Goodridge, 1788-1853; Elizabeth (Eliza) Goodridge, 1798-1882; Rosa Bonheur, 1822-99; Mary Cassatt, 1844-1926; Berthe Morisot, 1841-95; Eva Gonzales, 1849-83.

For reference:

Charles Willson Peale, 1741-1827; James Peale, 1749-1831; Rembrandt Peale 1778-1860; Rubens Peale, 1784-1865; R. Allan, 1713-84; J. Reynolds, 1723-92

Portraits of Rosa Bonheur by

Eduard Louis Dubufe, 1819-83; Consuelo Fould 1862-1927; Anna E. Klumpke, 1856-1942

Portrait of Eva Gonzales by

Edouard Manet, 1832-83       

Week 5: The 19th Century II

Photographs, sculptures and paintings by:

Julia M. Cameron, 1815-79; Edmonia Lewis, 1844-1907; Anna S. Golubkina, 1864-1927; Anna Ancher, 1859-1935; Bertha Wegmann, 1847-1926; Jeanna Bauck, 1840-1926; Paula Modersohn-Becker, 1876-1907; Elizabeth Forbes, 1859-1912; Emily Carr, 1871-1945.

Week 6: The 20th Century

Photographs, sculptures and paintings by:

Lola Mora, 1866-1936; Rebeca Matte, 1875-1929; Janet Scudder, 1869-1940; Malvina Hoffman, 1885-1966; Dorothea Lange, 1895-1965; Marion Post Wolcott, 1910-1990; Esther Bubley, 1921-98; Georgia O'Keefe, 1887-1986; Helen Frankenthaler, 1928-2011.    

How will I learn?

  • Lectures
  • Discussion (may vary from class to class)
  • Papers (applicable only to certificate students)

How will I be evaluated?

For certificate students only:

Your instructor will evaluate you based on an essay, which you will complete at the end of the course. You will receive a grade of “satisfactory” or “unsatisfactory.”

Textbooks and learning materials

Reading material (if applicable) will be available in class. Some course materials may be available online.

If you're 55+, you may take this course as part of

Look at other courses in