Women in Power in the Arts

Women of color face innumerable barriers and challenges in any profession, but this is especially true in the arts. As they work to create their art without compromising their artistic and personal integrity, women of color must navigate a fraught system of unequal pay, exclusionary practices, discriminatory and predatory contracting, patronizing reception, and code switching, among many other modes of inequity. Despite these challenges, countless women of color have made pivotal contributions that have reshaped their artistic field and inspired so many more young artists to follow in their footsteps.

These same barriers to success, however, often obscure their accomplishments. This exhibit, created to honor African American History Month and National Women’s Month (February and March) 2019, presents a small sampling of some of the great trailblazers in the arts, naturally they are all women of color. The women presented here were selected in part to accommodate the physical exhibit space and in part relative to the availability of primary and secondary research material by and about them at Howard-Tilton Memorial Library, Amistad Research Center, Howard-Tilton Memorial Library Rare Books, and Newcomb Archives and Vorhoff Library Special Collections.

We recognize that the very nature of inclusion within the constraints of this exhibit means there are undoubtedly significant exclusions. We encourage visitors to explore the collections at the various libraries, archives, and museums across the Tulane campus and throughout New Orleans to discover and learn about the many skillful and influential women of color in the arts.

Duration: February 1 - March 31, 2019

Curated By: lisa Hooper & Samantha Miker

Location: Howard-Tilton Memorial Library, 6th floor

Exhibit Sections