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By Carol Kort, Liz Sonneborn

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Additional resources for A to Z of American Women in the Visual Arts (Facts on File Library of American History)

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She seemed to have had an instinctive understanding of the workingclass women she observed in her neighborhood or on the subways, and sometimes in her studio. With an almost classical respect for the human figure, Bishop drew or painted these young women chatting together amicably or rushing around during their lunch breaks. Often light moved across or through Bishop’s female figures. “Although not consciously working from a feminist point of view, the vigor and strength of Bishop’s vision is revealed in her women,” commented Ann Sutherland Harris and Linda Nochlin in Women Artists: 1550–1950.

In 1920 Bacon married painter Alexander Brook, a fellow student, and within two years had two children. The family settled in Rock City, near the avant-garde art colony of Woodstock, New York, where they and other young modernists were known as the “Rock City Rebels” because they distanced themselves from more traditional artists such as Bacon’s former teachers Sloan and Bellows. After a few years, Bacon and Brook moved to Greenwich Village, a bohemian neighborhood in New York City, but they spent 16 their summers in art enclaves in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, and Maine.

After World War II, Bourke-White covered the grim conditions and violence that gave birth to the nations of India and Pakistan. Her most celebrated image from that period, however, was a peaceful one: Mahatma Gandhi at his Spinning Wheel (1946). Another notable achievement was her coverage in 1949 and 1950 of diamond and gold miners in South Africa, who labored for pennies a day under suffocating conditions thousands of feet underground. In one instance, Bourke-White had to be lowered 2,000 feet in a basket to get the shots she wanted.

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