Women Artists

Ref: C2420786

Artists, patrons and collectors: throughout the centuries, women have always played an active role in the making of art. They are, however, lesser known than their male counterparts. This course will address this difference in an attempt to raise the profile of women artists. From the Middle Ages to the present, this historical survey will help us identify and analyse the challenges women have had to face, as well as the contributions they have made to Western art history. The artists we will study include Artemisia Gentileschi, Judith Leyster, Elisabeth Vigée Le Brun, Berthe Morisot, Paula Modersohn-Becker, Georgia O'Keeffe, and many others. The chronological outline will allow us to understand how women artists have progressively become more prominent in the art world. Doing so, we will relate this change to broader cultural transformations impacting the place of women in Western society.

Course aim

This course explores the lives and careers of great women artists, from the Middle Ages onward.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed
  • This course is for beginners
  • This course is for improvers

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Name important women artists and situate them in the history of Western art
  • Give examples of gender differences in the art world throughout the centuries
  • Describe and discuss how women artists became progressively more prominent in the art world and relate these changes to a broader cultural context

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed
  • A class visit to a gallery might be organised. This will discussed during the first session of the course.

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading or pre course work is required

What can I do next?

Download full course information sheet

Women Artists


This course is funded by the Greater London Combined Authority but is also open to residents of other areas.

As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you book. Please could we ask that you check the list below to ensure you meet our basic criteria:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2019
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

Not sure or have further questions? Contact courseenquiries@wea.org.uk

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