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Anonymous was a Woman

Miriam Schapiro

Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art

On View:
Miriam Schapiro’s collages, like those of Taiye Idahor, were created to make connections with women of the past and to rebalance conventional male-dominated narratives. A “femmage” (her term for a feminist collage), Anonymous was a Woman celebrates female textile artists. Its roughly cut lace, cotton, and mesh squares set into acrylic paint evoke patchwork quilts. Only in recent years have museums recognized quilts—made almost exclusively by women, whose names were often unrecorded—as art. In the late 1960s, Schapiro spurned a successful abstract-painting career to explore an oft-neglected corner of art history known as “craft” or, in many cases dismissively, as “women’s work.” Inverting the pejorative term “craft,” her collages put everyday women’s creativity in a place of honor, the museum.
PORTFOLIO/SERIES From the series #2
MEDIUM Acrylic and collage on paper
DATES 1976
DIMENSIONS 30 × 22 in. (76.2 × 55.9 cm) frame: 33 3/4 × 25 3/4 × 1 1/2 in. (85.7 × 65.4 × 3.8 cm)  (show scale)
CREDIT LINE Gift of Amy Wolf and John Hatfield in memory of Cynthia Africano
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
CAPTION Miriam Schapiro (American, 1923–2015). Anonymous was a Woman, 1976. Acrylic and collage on paper, 30 × 22 in. (76.2 × 55.9 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Amy Wolf and John Hatfield in memory of Cynthia Africano, 2005.61. © artist or artist's estate (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 2005.61_PS1.jpg)
IMAGE overall, 2005.61_PS1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2006
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RIGHTS STATEMENT © Miriam Schapiro
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