By: Diane Granahan
17th Century Artist Reemerges as Feminist Icon:
On view through May 7, 2017 at the Palazzo Braschi Museum in Rome is an exhibition honoring the work of Artemisia Gentileschi titled Artemisia Gentileschi and Her Times. The painter has been recognized for breaking Counter-Reformation taboos, representing religious stories with nude women facing full-frontal, or posed in particularly masculine and heroic ways during a time when women artists were restricted to still life and portrait painting. Her father, Orazio Gentileschi, was a close friend of Caravaggio, whom of which Artemisia herself was considered one of the greatest and most talented followers (thanks to the encouragement of her father’s support at a very early age). While unfortunately the tragic history of the sexual assault against her by painter Agostino Tassi, followed by her testimony and trial has all too often eclipsed the mastery of her work giving a biased, if not skewed, understanding of Artemisia’s work prior to this particular exhibition. Truly a daring artist and a champion of strong women, we can easily say Artemisia is indeed a phenomenon of her time. Her work demonstrated a great depth, uniqueness, and mood well before any historical markers were placed in her life.
For more information on the exhibition, please check out the links below: