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Modern Scottish Women – Painters and Sculptors 1885-1965

Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, November 7th-June 26th

Long before the current generation of female Scottish artists started making waves, muscles of joy were being flexed in a way that paved the way for everything that followed. This major show of more than ninety works from familiar names including Joan Eardley and Phoebe Anna Traquair to less well-known but just as significant figures bookends its time-frame from when Fra Newberry became Director of Glasgow School of Art to the year of Anne Redpath's death.

In the years between, the doors were opened to women artists in a way that was unprecedented as they seized on new liberties in a way that allowed them to express their art as never before. Not that it was easy, as the exhibition makes clear by framing it in the context of the conditions female artists negotiated as students and practitioners due to their gender. Given that it moves through the age of suffrage to a more seemingly swinging age, the new research on the period which feeds into the show alongside a permanent display of prints by Wilhelmina Barnes-Graham should make for fascinating and inspirational viewing.

The List, November 2015

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