WASHINGTON—Emerging and underrepresented women and non-binary artists will get a boost from the National Museum of Women in the Arts (NMWA) in 2022. The museum will harness its award-winning #5WomenArtists social media campaign to champion early- to mid-career artists whose work has not been exhibited at the museum level, including artists from historically underrepresented or marginalized communities.
To increase awareness of gender inequity in the art world and beyond, the global campaign asks the question, “Can you name five women artists?” During the yearlong campaign, NMWA will partner with a network of organizations across the country that showcase and support the work of emerging and underrepresented women and nonbinary artists. NMWA’s popular Instagram Story takeovers will continue, along with new content that will highlight these artists across NMWA’s digital platforms and through product partnerships with the Museum Shop.
Since the campaign’s inception in 2016, more than 1,500 museums and cultural institutions on seven continents and in over 50 countries have participated by sharing the works and voices of women artists. Originally presented as a month-long campaign during Women’s History Month in March, #5WomenArtists now encourages supporters and art institutions to focus on women artists all year long.
“Especially while NMWA’s building is closed, we are using our digital presence to amplify the voices of women artists whose work may not be widely known yet,” said NMWA Director Susan Fisher Sterling. “The #5WomenArtists campaign is a powerful tool for combatting the gender inequity that exists in the art world, especially for younger and historically underrepresented artists.”
Partner organizations include Arlington Arts Center, Hamiltonian Artists, Katzen Arts Center at American University, Tephra Institute of Contemporary Art, Transformer, VisArts Richmond and Washington Project for the Arts. More partners will be added throughout the year. Those interested in collaborating can contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
#5WomenArtists Social Media Campaign
The 2022 edition of this award-winning campaign will feature content on NMWA’s website and blog as well as on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram using the hashtag #5WomenArtists. Across platforms, the museum will share information about women artists—including biographies, videos, graphics, quotes and statistics. To create an inclusive campaign and share a wide range of work by women artists, NMWA invites other cultural institutions to use #5WomenArtists on social media and will amplify and share their content on the museum’s platforms.
Since #5WomenArtists launched in 2016, participating institutions have included the American Folk Art Museum, New York; Arab American National Museum, Dearborn, Mich.; Asian Art Museum, San Francisco; Barnes Foundation, Philadelphia; British Museum, London; Cleveland Museum of Art; Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, New York; Guggenheim Museum Bilbao; Institute of American Indian Arts, Santa Fe; Le Gallerie degli Uffizi, Florence; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Migration Museum, London; Museo Frida Kahlo, Mexico City; Museu de Arte Sacra de São Paulo; Museum of African Contemporary Art Al Maaden, Marrakesh; Museum of Art & Photography, Bangalore; National Gallery, London; National Museum of African American History and Culture, Washington, D.C.; and many others.
Statistics and facts about gender inequities in the arts can be found on the advocacy section of NMWA’s website.
Upcoming #5WomenArtists Events
Virtual Happy Hours
Join NMWA staff and special guests to celebrate the lives of women artists. AJ Johnson, partner and bar director of Serenata, demonstrates how to make a specialty cocktail (or mocktail) in the artists’ honor as we share artworks and stories and explore the museum’s collection and archives. Free. Registration required. To support these programs and others like them, please consider making a donation.
- Wednesday, February 16, 5:30–6:30 p.m.: Celebrating Artemisia Gentileschi with special guest Eve Straussman-Pflanzer, curator and head of Italian and Spanish paintings at the National Gallery of Art
- Wednesday, March 16, 5:30–6:30 p.m.: Celebrating Black Women Printmakers
- Wednesday, May 18, 5:30–6:30 p.m.: Celebrating Surrealist Women Artists
International Women’s Day Virtual Festival
Tuesday, March 8, 10 a.m.–6:30 p.m.
Spend your International Women’s Day with the National Museum of Women in the Arts. Join conversations with artists from around the world, explore what’s new in the field of book arts, enjoy a cocktail and music with a special broadcast of The Tea and much more! Free. Live and pre-recorded programming available. Register for each program separately. Full program information available in early February.
FRESH TALK: Righting the Balance—Photographic Power
Wednesday, March 23, 5:30–7 p.m.
For nearly two centuries, women have been leaders, inventors and innovators within the field of photography. Inspired by NMWA’s recent acquisition of vintage photographs by U.K.-based artists, this Fresh Talk presents a new view of photography through the lens of some of the U.K.’s most exciting photo scholars and curators. Each guest works passionately to recover and underscore the creative power of women and nonbinary artists working in this vital medium. Join us for a conversation with Dr. Del Barrett, chair and founder of Hundred Heroines; photographic artist and curator Bindi Vora; and Renée Mussai, senior curator and head of archive and research at Autograph, about how they are working toward gender parity in the art world. Free. $10 suggested donation. Registration required. The conversation will be posted to the museum’s YouTube channel and website one week after the event.
About the National Museum of Women in the Arts
The National Museum of Women in the Arts (NMWA) is the first museum in the world solely dedicated to championing women through the arts. With its collections, exhibitions, programs and online content, the museum inspires dynamic exchanges about art and ideas. NMWA advocates for better representation of women artists and serves as a vital center for thought leadership, community engagement and social change. NMWA addresses the gender imbalance in the presentation of art by bringing to light important women artists of the past while promoting great women artists working today. The collections highlight painting, sculpture, photography and video by artists including Louise Bourgeois, Mary Cassatt, Judy Chicago, Frida Kahlo, Shirin Neshat, Faith Ringgold, Pipilotti Rist, Amy Sherald and Élisabeth Louise Vigée-LeBrun.
The museum building is closed for a major renovation, with plans to reopen in fall 2023. Visit nmwa.org/renovation for more information. During the building closure, NMWA continues its mission-based work and engages supporters and friends through a dynamic slate of online programs and events, off-site and virtual exhibitions, and digital content. For information, call 202-783-5000, visit nmwa.org, Broad Strokes blog, Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.