Defining Women

This exhibition considers the roles of women in print media as subject, creator or both. It focuses on the traditional, and sometimes limited, range of identities available for depictions of women as well as the defining women artists and subjects who step outside of and challenge such prominent and recurring themes.

Defining Women : Decided at Davidson Galleries

Ellen Heck American (b. 1983)


Series: Lonely Hearts
Medium: Woodcut and drypoint
Year: 2014
Edition : 9
Size: 22 x 15 inches
Description: Ellen Heck conceived of her LONELY HEARTS series as metaphorical portraits in which she used hearts in compositions with figures to depict the many different types of love that people experience. Approaching such a mature subject in the form of young girls gives them an agency and voice for which they are so rarely credited in actuality. Indeed, Decided, by its very title if not for the smiling, self-assured girl, presents the rare case of a young woman taking an active and decisive role in love rather than one that is passive or dependent. It is she who defines the love as she experiences it.
Price: $800.00

Defining Women : La Robe Rouge at Davidson Galleries

James Abbott Mcneill Whistler American (1834–1903)

La Robe Rouge

Series: The Studio
Medium: Lithograph
Year: 1894
Signature: Butterfly signature in the stone
Publisher: The Studio, London. Blindstamp lower left
References: Way 68, Levy 96
Size: 7-1/8 x 6 inches
Description: In a composition entitled The Red Dress, one would assume the subject to be just that. This lithograph by Whistler, however, done in black and white, presents more of a portrait of his wife, Beatrix. Confident and self-satisfied, Beatrix engages the viewer with a direct gaze and amused smile. Far from being an illustration of fashion so popular at the time, we instead have a clear visual description of this formidable woman’s personality.
Stock Number: 46053c
Price: $850.00

Defining Women : Arithmetica at Davidson Galleries

Crispin Van De Passe


Series: The Seven Liberal Arts
Printer: Marten de Vos
Size: 6-7/16 x 3-5/8 inches
Description: Using the figure of a woman as a personification for an abstract concept is a tradition that goes back centuries. Here, she is shown as Arithmetic, one of the Seven Liberal Arts and essential tenets of a high education. Engrossed in her calculations, a satisfied smile spreading across her face, Arithmetica is surrounded by coins, books and her children, - the mathematicians and architects.
Stock Number: 50932c
Price: $350.00

Lovers and The Beloved

Lovers and The Beloved : Woman #2 at Davidson Galleries

Gregory Grenon American (b. 1948)

Woman #2

Medium: Lithograph
Year: 1976
Edition : 3/25
Signature: Signed in pencil
Size: 30-1/2 x 22-1/2 inches
Description: Influenced greatly by the power and beauty that he sees in women, Grenon has made his oeuvre almost entirely of women’s faces. In Woman #2, his subject is clearly divided into light and dark halves, but she is by no means broken apart. The two sides show her complexity and potential duality; the innocent and the wicked, and, possibly, the virgin and the whore. In Grenon’s eyes, however, she is not limited to the black and white binary of virtuous or depraved, rather she is literally multifaceted behind her challenging eyes and knowing smile.
Stock Number: 45045c

Lovers and The Beloved : The Wise Virgin at Davidson Galleries

Jenny Schmid American (b. 1969)

The Wise Virgin

Medium: Lithograph
Year: 2003
Edition : 23
Signature: Signed in pencil
Size: 20 x 15 inches
Description: The parable of the ten virgins is told in the New Testament to instruct Christians to be ready for Jesus’s return. Here Schmid combines the parable with more literal allusions to the trapping of a woman’s virginity. Carrying the oil lamp from the parable, the wise virgin hurries quickly by a lecherous man while simultaneously stomping on a serpent and avoiding the devil trying to pour poison in her ear. Unlike Eve, she is not swayed by temptation. The surrounding portraits of Queen Elizabeth I imbue her with the strength and authority that comes with maintaining control over one’s own body.
Price: $550.00

Lovers and The Beloved : Two Women in a Garden at Davidson Galleries

Javier Vilato Spanish (1921 - 2000)

Two Women in a Garden

Medium: Etching, aquatint and drypoint
Edition : 141/220
Size: 16 1/4 x 11 1/2 inches
Description: This intriguing work by Vilato (Picasso’s nephew) takes place in a garden, a traditional setting for lovers to meet and trysts to take place. The intimate nature and shy demeanor of the two women further allude to a romantic connection between them. Most telling, however, is the woman on the right tentatively extending her finger to brush the exposed knee of the woman on the left. The garden in this instance provides the lovers with a secluded arena in which to explore an affection that at that time would likely have been, at best, misunderstood and, at worst, reviled.
Stock Number: 18553c

Models and Muses

Models and Muses : Momento No. 9690 (muse) at Davidson Galleries

Carrie LINGSCHEIT American (b. 1984)

Momento No. 9690 (muse)

Medium: Intaglio
Year: 2010
Edition : AP
Signature: Signed in pencil
Size: 17 x 11 inches
Description: Carrie Lingscheit’s work focuses on the malleable nature of memory formation and recall, wherein she creates dubious narratives characterized by omission, distortion, and hyperbole. With Muse she presents the viewer with the challenge of not knowing whether “muse” is meant as a verb, a noun or both. We could be looking at a contemporary muse with the power to move creative minds like the wind moves a weather vane. Or we could just as easily be witnessing an event on a rooftop when a woman muses on an unknowable thought. Again with Lingsheit’s versatility, the scene could be either or both.
Price: $350.00


Performers : Woman Playing Koto at Davidson Galleries

Artist Unidentified

Woman Playing Koto

Medium: Color woodblock
Publisher: Shinagawa, Kyoto
Size: 10-5/8 c 15-1/2 inches
Description: The koto was an instrument largely played by male musicians until the 17th and 18th centuries when women started to learn it in greater numbers. Around the turn of the twentieth century, koto lessons were incorporated both in girls’ formal school curricula and in geisha training. It was a popular instrument among the wealthy and was associated with love, romance and one of the desirable traits one looked for in a wife. Here a young women sits, quietly absorbed in her music, perhaps practicing to charm a lover, or maybe just for the pure enjoyment of the art itself.
Stock Number: 31006
Price: $160.00


Mothers : Daphnis and Chloe at Davidson Galleries

Aristide Maillol French (1861–1944)

Daphnis and Chloe

Series: Illustration for Daphnis and Chloe by Longus
Medium: Woodcut
Year: 1937
Edition : Proof
Publisher: Published by Phillipe Gonin, Paris, 1937
References: Reference: Rewald 122
Provenance: Daphnis and Chloe by Longus
Size: Image: 5 x 2 in. Sheet: 7-7/8 x 5-1/4 in
Description: Daphnis and Chloe is an Ancient Greek tale that follows a boy and a girl from young, naive love, through trials and tribulations and finally to a happy ending together. In Maillol's depiction, he shows the more mature Daphnis and Chloe, happy together and expecting a child. It is a touching portrait of a profound love that was hard earned.
Stock Number: 43468c

Mothers : Couple with Child at Davidson Galleries

Hans Erni Swiss (b. 1909)

Couple with Child

Medium: Lithograph
Year: 1953
Edition : 96/100
Signature: Signed in pencil
Printer: Maison Kratz, Zurich
References: Cailler 66
Size: 17-1/2 x 23 inches
Description: In a composition free of landscape, narrative elements or even personal accoutrements, Erni directs the focus on the bodies and connectivity of a new family. The man and women, their physical link to each and and the child they made together almost tangible, fold lovingly towards one another and their newborn child as the mother takes it to the breast. The strength and protection comes not just from the mother alone, but from the family as a whole.
Stock Number: 43452c
Price: $600.00

Mothers : Untitled (Pregnant Woman) at Davidson Galleries

Bernhard Jäger German (b. 1935)

Untitled (Pregnant Woman)

Medium: Color lithograph
Year: 1973
Edition : 16/222
Signature: Signed in pencil
Size: 19-3/4 x 15-3/4 inches
Description: In a grand departure from the tender images of mothers and children, Jäger breaks down the anatomy of the pregnant woman into a series of shapes and parts and reconstructs it into an intriguingly grotesque composition of tubes, breasts and an amorphous polywog-like fetus. Scientifically abstracted, the inspirational subject “Pregnant Woman,” comes secondary to the construction and layout of the “Untitled” composition of shapes and colors.
Stock Number: 20451c
Price: $325.00

Warriors and Leaders

Warriors and Leaders : Te Volvi a Ver (I Saw You Again) at Davidson Galleries

Jose Guadalupe Posada Mexican (1851–1913)

Te Volvi a Ver (I Saw You Again)

Medium: Wood engraving
Year: 1942
Publisher: Published by La Estampa Mexicana
Size: 5 x 3-1/4 inches
Description: Wood engraving from 25 Prints of José Guadelupe Posada
Stock Number: 10032
Price: $145.00


Laborers : Finishing Shells at Davidson Galleries

Joseph Pennell American (1857–1926)

Finishing Shells

Medium: Lithograph
Year: 1916
Edition : 50
Signature: Signed in the stone
Size: 20-3/4 x 15-3/4 inches
Description: Joseph Pennell's Finishing Shells breaks the mold of traditional “women’s work” by showing women in an industrial setting. With two years into World War I and two still yet to go, women were a much needed labor force in the factories on the hone front. In Pennell's lithograph, men and women alike labor to make weaponry for the war effort.
Stock Number: 45696
Price: $385.00

Laborers : Preparing Yarn (Working with Ixtle) at Davidson Galleries

Fernando Castro Pacheco Mexican (1918-2013)

Preparing Yarn (Working with Ixtle)

Series: Portfolio: Mexican People, edited by Associated American Artists. 12 prints total by different artists.
Medium: Lithograph
Year: 1946
Signature: Signed in pencil
References: Prignitz 616
Size: 11 x 14 inches
Description: Pacheco was a Mexican painter, printmaker and teacher who was well known for traditional artistic forms and for his murals that invoke the spirit and history of the Mexican people. Ixtle is a fiber from any of several tropical American agave or yucca plants, traditionally used for cordage, nets, and carpets. Pacheco shows a woman here spinning the fibers by hand.
Stock Number: 13875
Price: $250.00

Laborers : Lace Makers, Puerto Rico at Davidson Galleries

Irwin D. Hoffman American (1901-1989)

Lace Makers, Puerto Rico

Medium: Drypoint
Year: 1944
Signature: Signed and titled in pencil, Signed and dated in the plate
Publisher: Associated American Artists
Size: 9-5/8 x 11-3/4 inches
Description: Known early as a talented portrait artist, Hoffman later earned a reputation for gritty genre scenes and in the late 1930s went to Puerto Rico to observe the peasant life there. Likely the women here are making mundillo, a cultivated, handmade bobbin lace that was brought to Puerto Rico from Spain, where it had thrived in major commercial markets. This lacemaking skill has now become an honored tradition among Puerto Rican women involved in the craft.
Condition: Two spots in bottom margin, verso toned
Stock Number: 31223c
Price: $400.00