Women Artists 2 - A Renaissance for Women?
Having left the seclusion convent behind, we will head out into a world where the majority of female painters were still the daughters of artists. Some of them became hugely successful in their own right, whereas others, despite initial parental encouragement, were ultimately never allowed to leave the nest. However, there was a new phenomenon: women who learned to paint as a lady-like accomplishment, who became sufficiently good to have something like a career. There were even those who were successful enough to be considered professional artists, with assistants, and agents, and sometimes even both. All of this week's heroines were working in the 16th Century, and will include Catharina van Hemessen, Sofonisba Anguissola, Lavina Teerlinc and Lavinia Fontana – not to mention an even greater rarity, the renaissance ‘sculptress’, Properzia de’ Rossi.