3.2 Choosing Texts: Cornwall Knowns and Unknowns 3: Text and Image: Woman Lost posts In Process


“I have had to go to men as sources in my painting because the past has left us so small an inheritance of woman’s painting that had widened life….Before I put a brush to canvas I question, “Is this mine? Is it all intrinsically of myself? Is it influenced by some idea or some photograph of an idea which I have acquired from some man?”

Georgia O’Keefe
For an interview with Georgia O’Keefe visit

What is feminism?

Some people have found it helpful to think about the history of the feminist movement in terms of first, second and third waves. Broadly speaking, these are:

  • First wave – from the formation of the National Women’s Society for Women’s Suffrage in 1867 to full female enfranchisement in the UK in 1928.
  • Second wave – from the feminist movements associated with the American civil rights movement of the early 1960s to equality legislation in the UK in the 1970s.
  • Third wave – from the 1980s to the present day, more about social and political change than legislative change.

Feminist art and design

Guerrilla Girls
Hannah Höch (1889–1978)
Tamara de Lempicka (1898–1980)
Frida Kahlo (1907–54).
Martha Rosler
Visit the links below to discover more about feminism and feminist art:

  • What were the social and political conditions that made these artists communicate in the ways they did?
  • How is this demonstrated in their work?
  • How did these artists establish their own artistic

Feminist photography

Chapter 6 of your course reader (pp.292–96).