Katy Hessel@thegreatwomenartists

🤘 Celebrating female art daily
🤳 Curated Women on Instagram at Mother London
👩🏻💻 Marketing @victoriamirogallery
📝 thegreatwomenartists@gmail.com ⬇️📃📩


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Checked out drawer and tapestry maker Bea Bonafini’s (@beabonafini) very beautiful work today at her new @lycheeone show “Shed Shreds” ✨ Inspired by “The Lady and the Unicorn” tapestry at Paris’s Musée Cluny, Bea’s tapestries made from different textured carpets fill themselves with floating animals and battlegrounds, which take you a while to realise at first. ⚔️ Similar with her drawings (very @judychicago-esque) whose armed subjects’ battles weave into each other in the most organic way • Been an avid follower of Bea’s since her @sladeschool BA show four years ago. Go see this seriously cool artist 👁️ Until 4 March • #BeaBonafini #WomenArtists

Lychee One

Wowza! ✨🇯🇵 This really beautiful artwork is by Oei Katsushika 🌸 Heard of her? You’re more likely to know her father, one of the most celebrated artists of the Edo Period in Japan - Hokusai 🌊 • An artist in her own right, Oei, was also an assistant to her father at the time when he created “The Great Wave off Kanagawa” 💫 Thought to have been born around 1800, Oei excelled at handwriting and bijin-ga paintings of beautiful women. Very close to Hokusai throughout her life, Oei, whose name translates to ‘daughter’ or ‘woman’, curiously disappeared after his death and was never really heard of or seen much ever again • Swipe for full image and detailed shots of that crazy sky and cherry blossom 🌙🌸✨ • “Cherry Blossom in the Night” • #KatsushikaOei #WomenArtists #JapaneseArt


Young ceramicists Katie Spragg (@katie_spragg_ceram) plays with the idea of clay in her work like I’ve never see before ✨ Often a more weighty material, Spragg creates the opposite (and extraordinary) with her delicate feathery sculptures of fine plants - think grass tufts made from celestial-like porcelain 🌱 The young artist and RCA grad makes each delicate blade by hand to tell a curious story • #KatieSpragg #WomenArtists


My highlight of the @londonartfair is Sophie Charalambous’s (@charalamboussophie) intricate painting of a surreal garden at Jessica Carlisle (stand G2!) 🌳✨ Also a teacher @royaldrawingschool, Sophie’s primitive drawings and works on paper remind me of an ancient scene in a (very modern) illuminated manuscript, which makes sense that she draws for theatre sets too! • If you’re stopping by this weekend don’t miss this stand which includes GWA favourite @hesterfinchw#SophieCharalambous #WomenArtists

London Art Fair, Business Design Centre

Loved seeing the work of Jessie Makinson (@jessie_makinson) at @roamingprojects’ If You Can’t Stand The Heat ✨🏺 Specialising in painting and ceramics (with a practice led by drawing) the @royaldrawingschool grad’s exquisite works transport its viewers to looking at surreal and figurative dreamscapes. Embedded with art historical references, Makinson also uses a Rococo-esque palette to portray her predominantly female-led canvases • One to watch 👁️ • On view until 28 Jan • #JessieMakinson #WomenArtists


Last week I visited the studio of one of my favourite artists who goes by the name @unskilledworker, and saw this finished masterpiece of the late Mark Shand as a work-in-progress ✨🦊 Always filled to the brim, Unskilled Worker’s paintings remind me of modern day Renaissance scenes with the mesmerising amount of narratives that fit within narratives: you could look at her work for hours and still discover a new section, feature or symbol 🦋🐘🦋#UnskilledWorker #WomenArtists #adventuresandcuriositys


Just visited one of my favourite artists Antonia Showering (@antoniashowering) at her Slade studio, where she is about to complete her MFA ✨🎓 Based on memories and the memory of relationships, Showering’s vibrantly coloured paintings and works on paper layer themselves by both paint and narrative with underlying scenes occurring throughout - see it in the water, a window, or through a body. The fraught image of memory she projects reminds me of the figures Richard Mosse’s very moving Incoming film last year. It’s as though they are the ‘negatives’, but not quite. Don’t miss her degree show in June 👁️ One to watch 👁️ Thanks Antonia 💙#AntoniaShowering #WomenArtists

Slade School of Fine Art

Swiss-born Christina Forrer creates vibrant tapestries full of disquieting scenes in which naïve, wide-eyed cartoonish figures are depicted in emotionally fraught situations, as if to modernise the medieval battle scenes that tapestries would’ve historically portrayed 💡 Drawing on Ernst Ludwig Kirchner’s paintings and Hannah Ryggen’s political tapestries, Forrer explores the weave itself as a structure and medium that physically tugs and emotionally holds imagery in and out of shape 📌📌📌 (2010s) • #ChristinaForrer #WomenArtists


Just checked out one of the best shows I’ve seen in a while - “If you Can’t Stand The Heat” - an all-female ceramic exhibition at Hackney’s @roamingprojects 🏺✨🏺 Featuring the work of 25 seriously cool artists (including @beabonafini, @hannah_bays, @u.tsuchiya, @anne_ryan_painter) the show presents clay-based work in all shapes, sizes and subjects that often don’t appear as you first expect them to 😎 Head down to check out established and emerging artists, you’ll want it all! (I am now the proud owner of 3 pots made in collaboration by some of London’s most exciting ceramicists: @anoushapayne, @jessie_makinson + @palomaproudfoot!) 🌞 Curated by @05rpilston @lindseymendick + @palomaproudfoot ✌️ GO until 28 Jan • #WomenArtists #Ceramics

Bohemia Hackney

Romaine Brooks, born Beatrice Goddard in 1874, was an American portrait painter and a turn-of-the-century icon known for her subdued tonal palette ✨ After spending much of her life grappling with an affectionless childhood, Brooks inherited a small fortune in 1902 that gave her the freedom to paint in her own style and subjects - and therefore reject the artistic trends of her time: Cubism and Fauvism 🌿 After a tumultuous marriage to a man, the always androgynously-dressed Brooks had relationships with women who she portrayed in her portraits, which shined a light on the margins of her own society who quietly shaped the culture of the 20th century ☁️ (and painted lots of dogs 🐶🐶!!) • #RomaineBrooks #WomenArtists


Ethiopian-born Julie Mehretu’s giant Abstract works conjure the incomprehensibility of our ever changing and multi-layered world 🌎✨ A recent commission by @sfmoma “HOWL” (that stands at 27 ft high!), looks at the idea of the American West as a site of both great possibility and destruction: the multi layers of abstract textures and gestures reflect a society continually reshaped by movement and struggle 🗽 Image 2 is from my visit to @imperialwarmuseums#AgeOfTerror exhibition this evening, which features a highly intricate and multi-layered Mehretu that reflects the devastation of the current conflict in Syria • #JulieMehretu #WomenArtists


Born on this day in 1638, Elisabetta Sirani was a great pioneering Baroque artist who broke boundaries depicting historic heroic women as courageous, calm and virtuous - as seen in her “Portia Wounding Her Thigh” 🤘✨🌹 Already supporting her family age 19, Sirani earned herself top commissions by the likes of Cosimo de Medici, but sadly (and suspiciously) died soon after age 27, having completed 200+ works in her short career 🌿 • (1664) • #ElisabettaSirani #WomenArtists