Women’s Work: The Petticoat Collective (Part I & II)

The Petticoat Painters is one of the oldest continuously exhibiting women’s art groups in the United States. It was formed in 1953 to showcase the talents of female artists at a time when women had difficulty finding venues to show their work. Seven women participated in the first show held at a local Sarasota gallery. These original members selected the name “Petticoat Painters,” thinking it would be a one-time opportunity. The name continues to be used today both in honor of the founders and to retain its historical signature.

The exhibition Women’s Work: The Petticoat Collective features works by sixteen award-winning members of the organization and is presented on the occasion of the celebration of the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage.

Part I (March-September, 2020) presents works by Lucy Barber, Susan Covert, Jamie Friedli, Susan J. Klein, Judy Lyons Schneider, Ellen Mason, Meg Pierce, Keiko Romerstein, and Kathy Wright. Barber, known for her landscapes, still-lifes, and figurative work, presents a series of seascapes, while Covert shows a selection of her “Plein-air” paintings and interiors. Friedli and Klein, who also depict landscapes, use bold color to interpret the living force that surrounds us. Schneider’s work stands out for its intriguing technique -solar plate etching- while Mason approaches landscape in an abstract way that recalls Robert Motherwell’s work. Pierce and Romerstein’s artwork, featuring fabric and stitching and Sumi-e painting, enrich the selection with delicate pieces, while Wright brightens the gallery with lively-colored-abstract canvases.

Part II (September-December, 2020) features Jacqueline Clark, Peppi Elona, Madelaine Ginsberg, Evelyn McCorristin Peters, Jana Millstone, Janet Mishner, and Diane Schmidt. The show highlights a variety of techniques and subject matter. Clark’s watercolors depict colorful interiors while Schmidt’s present narrative portraits of modern women’s situations. Elona’s art investigates abstraction and figuration employing a unique painting technique that defines the pictorial space. McCorristin Peters’ paintings fill the gallery with bright colored pieces inspired by nature, while Millstone’s work emphasizes surreal scenarios that comment on our times. Ginsberg’s acrylic paintings represent abstract compositions in a beautifully colored palette. Finally, Mishner completes the selection with abstract-expressionistic works that, according to the artist, originate in her mind and not from direct observation.

Art Ovation Hotel is pleased to present this exhibition and contribute to the foundational mission of Petticoat Painters, which is to support and promote female artists in the Sarasota community. For more information, please visit www.petticoatpainters.com.

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