Why is it the men are always successful?

Wednesday 19 September 2007 7 responses

There are these days a significant number of female artists, yet obviously the men are still for the most part successful. I think the reasons are rooted deep within the human psyche.

I begin by saying great artists are confrontational people. Cassat and Morrisot had to content themselves with nice family scenes. Gentilelschi was indeed confrontational but how many of her own paintings can you count on more than two hands and just think how badly she was treated.

Now I'll make another bold statement. Men generally speaking have a fear of women which they do not care to admit. That is why women have been oppressed historically. You will appreciate that people who are free to confront issues have power. Now women these days do have more power than ever and routinely confront issues in the daily course of business. However art is another matter. It often deals things of the unconscious. It may bring comfort but also may confront the issues we would rather not know about.

Rather than continue giving my conclusion, perhaps you ladies would care to give us what you see as the role of women in art. Do you want the power of confrontation or that of love and nurture? Quite clearly both are necessary.
Well I've put my big foot in it again and I do appreciate this isn't a comfortable matter for discussion. However, you may not feel comfortable playing second fiddle either. Great artists are not people who feel particularly comfortable with themselves let alone other people.

Mike Fone

Mike...I am posting this in response to your article...
I only heard about this Australian Artist last week...
Jan Dean told me after she heard about the artist on Radio National.......

"Although Yvonne Audette's distinctive, abstract paintings are represented in all our major art galleries, it's only now that the National Gallery of Victoria is celebrating the lyrical works which the young expatriate artist created in New York and Europe during the glory days of abstraction in the 1950s and 1960s.
Born in 1930, Yvonne Audette travelled to the US in 1952. There, as she studied art, she encountered the radical new abstract work of artists including Willem de Kooning and Robert Motherwell, Mark Tobey and Franz Kline. In 1955, she travelled extensively through Spain and then to France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany and Italy, where she established a studio in Florence and later, in Milan. Audette lived and worked in Italy, presenting numerous exhibitions, until 1966 when she returned permanently to Australia.
NGV Curator Kirsty Grant said:
The experiences of Yvonne Audette's expatriate years were critical to her development as an artist. Looking at the paintings and drawings from that time, the viewer can visualise the steady evolution of Audette's graphic vocabulary, from the bold linear quality of her earliest experimentation with abstract forms to the lyrical calligraphic and graffiti works for which she is renowned."

Artist Yvonne Audette is finally gaining recognition.......

While Audette has continued to work and regularly exhibit, she says she was ignored by critics and writers for many years. "I am only just beginning to be recognised. Women from very early times weren't given their due until the last 10 or 15 years. There's been a hold up in this country, a mentality that has for some reason felt the woman was not as creative as the man, whereas she has been given equal status in Europe and America since the 1950s and '60s."
read the full article here at
The Age

7 responses: to “

so far...

  • Anonymous 19.9.07

    I always appreciate someone that is willing to speak their mind.

    It is a sad thing when one fails to recognize beauty no matter what package it comes in.

    I truly believe way too many don't know what beauty is and grasp at what they relate to or what relates to them. Meaning, you rub my shoulder and I'll rub yours.

    As you say, in America art and design is probably close to being dominated by women.

    Just read Tom Peter's Re-imagine.

    It is a tragedy to see any talent wasted and unrealized.

    Thanks for your bravery! You are the greatest.

  • Anonymous 19.9.07

    My husband used to buy a lot of art and we generally agreed on what he bought. Occasionally we disagreed and it was a source of great merriment to our friends to discuss his more controversial choices!
    He once said to me that he would buy the 'art' and I could buy the 'craft' - ceramics, glass etc. He obviously didn't trust my taste with a large budget. Needless to say we are no longer together (but that's another story!)
    I do wonder whether occasionally women's artistic endeavours used to be seen as just that - 'crafts' or a little hobby to be fitted in around domestic responsibilities.
    I worked in an art gallery for 18 months recently and two of our best selling artists were women who painted full time and supported themselves (and families) very nicely, thank you!
    We should appreciate art for its own sake, wherever it comes from, regardless of the gender of the artist but also we should equally value the 'crafts' of full-time and part-time crafts people - and especially the hobbyists. I declare a vested interest here!

  • Kim 19.9.07

    hi Boyd
    quite serendipitous that I received both articles in the same week eh......
    and I agree that it's not what you know BUT who you know....Mikey has hit the nail on the head with his article...and I wonder whether it is a male /female issue or perhaps....a case of the strongest and most resiliant who will end up winning in the long run....

    so true Diane
    we are definitely not taken seriously in general ...
    I remember when I was at art school and being mistaken for a hairdressing student because women weren't thought of as artists by the male majority...
    a lot of males haven't come to terms with the fact that there are a lot of women out there who make a very nice living ....in a lot of male dominated fields.....not just art and craft.....
    I read a post (Pearl at Interesting Observations)recently that addressed this very same issue in the blogosphere ...
    women are outnumbered in the top ratings...when it comes to the internet....for just the same reasons that Mikey has mentioned here.......I think it all boils down to the fact that most women aren't prepared to blow their own trumpet...etc...etc....
    sounds like your ex....will be happy with his art investments..
    anmd you will be happy with your creative and artistic life ... :D

  • Anonymous 19.9.07

    Ha!You probably just had very nice hair!

    Reminds me of when I was at uni. I did a Metallurgy degree and was the only female amongst 20+ males. Could have had a great time had I not been the shyest person in the world! If only one could go back...I'm not at all shy now and could do with meeting some single men!

  • Kim 19.9.07

    ah Diane
    I had very long hair then.....
    I know how you feel ...I was the only girl in my Tech Drawing class at school....and terribly shy....

    you need to take a trip over to Oz....
    we have plenty of single blokes over here...... ;) :D

  • Unknown 21.9.07

    The actual art is what matters and art doesn't have a gender.

  • Kim 21.9.07

    very true Patrick :)
    it just seems that the male artists are promoted more...so there are quite a number of very good female artists...who are falling by the wayside....
    thanks for stopping by and leaving your comment......