The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden will present “Put It This Way: (Re)Visions of the Hirshhorn Collection,” an exhibition devoted to the work of nearly 50 women and nonbinary artists in the Hirshhorn’s collection. Opening July 22, the exhibition will bring together almost a century of work in a range of media drawn exclusively from the museum’s holdings, beginning with early works by Carlotta Copron, Barbara Hepworth and Julia Thecla. One-quarter of the artworks have been made in the past decade by the likes of Loie Hollowell, Rachel Jones, Deana Lawson, Sondra Perry and Kiyan Williams. Recent acquisitions include art works by Dana Awartani, Zanele Muholi and Billie Zangewa that reflect the museum’s mission to highlight global voices. Many works from the permanent collection that have never been seen before at the Hirshhorn will also be on view, notably an untitled 1974–1975 mosaic by Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian, Ana Mendieta’s “Blood and Feathers” (1974) and Diana Thater’s installation, “Oo Fifi, Five Days in Claude Monet’s Garden, Parts 1 and 2” (1992).

Titled after a 1963 painting by American pop artist Rosalyn Drexler, whose work is featured in the exhibition, “Put It This Way” is organized by Hirshhorn Associate Curator Anne Reeve. The exhibition will speak to traditionally marginalized artists’ decisive and virtuosic achievements, and investigate a wide array of aesthetic, political and historical concerns. The full-floor presentation is intended to encourage conversations around the significance of gender in creating and perceiving an artwork and the effects of categorizing artists by gender.

Encompassing a wide range of media, subject matter, sensibilities and approaches, the exhibition will engage with the complexities and contradictions of approaching art through the lens of gender and the idea of “woman artist” as an easily defined or decisive category. Set against current and ongoing conversations regarding gender, power and professional recognition, and featuring work by artists including Zarouhie Abdalian, Drexler, Eva Hesse, Eva Lewitt, Joan Mitchell, Roberts, Betye Saar, Carolee Schneemann, Michelle Stuart and Alma Thomas, “Put It This Way” captures the breadth, radicality and rigor of art made by traditionally underrepresented artists and investigates the ways that gender itself can be understood in relation to the creation and presentation of art.

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