National Museum of Women in the Arts

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NMWA’s collection features more than 4,500 works from the 16th-century to the present created by more than 1,000 artists.

Special collections include 17th-century botanical prints by Maria Sibylla Merian; works by British and Irish women silversmiths from the 17th–19th centuries; and 500 artists’ books from 1970 to the present.

The collection spans many mediums and features:

  • paintings by Elisabetta Sirani, Berthe Morisot, Suzanne Valadon and Alma Thomas;

  • sculpture by Sarah Bernhardt, Dorothy Dehner, Barbara Hepworth, Louise Nevelson, Magdalena Abakanowicz and Chakaia Booker;

  • drawings and works on paper by Elisabeth-Louise Vigée-Lebrun, Mary Cassatt, Käthe Kollwitz and Elizabeth Catlett;

  • photographs by Gertrude Käsebier, Louise Dahl-Wolfe, Nan Goldin and Jus-tine Kurland; and

  • videos by Dara Birnbaum, Pipilotti Rist and Mwangi Hutter.

Other artists represented include: Louise Bourgeois, Lola Alvarez Bravo, Rosalba Car-riera, Louisa Courtauld, Petah Coyne, Elaine de Kooning, Rineke Dijkstra, Lesley Dill, Helen Frankenthaler, Marguerite Gérard, Nancy Graves, Grace Hartigan, Frida Kahlo, Angelica Kauffman, Lee Krasner, Marie Laurencin, Judith Leyster, Hung Liu, Maria Martinez, Joan Mitchell, Gabriele Münter, Alice Neel, Sarah Miriam Peale, Lilla Cabot Perry, Jaune Quick-to-See Smith, Rachel Ruysch, Joan Snyder and Lilly Martin Spencer.
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Image credits:

  • Lilla Cabot Perry, Lady With a Bowl of Violets, ca. 1910; Oil on canvas, 40 1/4 x 30 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Wallace and Wilhelmina Holladay; Photo by Lee Stalsworth; Photographer: Lee Stalsworth

  • Patricia Piccinini, The Stags, 2008; Fiberglass, automotive paint, leather, steel, plastic, and rubber, 69 3/4 x 72 x 40 1/4 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Heather and Tony Podesta Collection; © Patricia Piccinini; Photo by Graham Baring

  • Judy Chicago, Pasadena Lifesavers Red #5, 1970; Sprayed acrylic lacquer on acrylic, 60 x 60 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Elyse and Stanley Grinstein; © 1970 Judy Chicago

  • Amy Sherald, They call me Redbone but I’d rather be Strawberry Shortcake, 2009; Oil on canvas, 54 x 43 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Steven Scott, Baltimore, in honor of the artist and the 25th Anniversary of NMWA; © Amy Sherald; Photo by Lee Stalsworth

  • Shirin Neshat, On Guard from the series “Turbulent,” 1996; Gelatin silver print with ink, 11 x 14 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Tony Podesta Collection; © Shirin Neshat

The Library and Research Center

NMWA also serves as a center for the performing and literary arts and other creative disciplines. The Library and Research Center of the NMWA aims to educate and inform the public about the contributions of women to the visual arts by sharing its resources with library users and visitors. The Library’s resources include more than 18,500 books and exhibition catalogues, periodicals, multi-media resources and artists’ books, along with the Archives on Women Artists and a number of special collections, including artists’ papers. Clara: database of Women Artists provides access through a user-friendly, searchable interface to biographic and demographic information on close to 18,000 historic and contemporary women artists from around the world.