March 19th 2023 is Mother’s Day, or Mothering Sunday as it is traditionally known, and has been observed religiously since the Middle Ages, and more commercially since the early 1900s.
It is a day of observance set aside for celebrating the treasured women in our lives, and fittingly falls within Women’s History Month, together with International Women’s Day.
Since 1987 March has been a month dedicated to celebrating the (often overlooked) contributions of women to history, society, and culture. Its beginning can be traced as far back as 1909 to the first Women’s History Day in New York, when it commemorated the anniversary of the thousands of women who marched in the garment workers’ strikes against low pay, long work hours, and the lack of voting rights. Later, in 1911, the first International Women’s Day was established as a holiday - celebrated globally to recognise women’s incredible achievements, and to encourage everyone from all different backgrounds and cultures to advocate for gender equality and women’s rights.
Each year, Women’s History Month focuses on a different theme, with the theme for 2023 being “Celebrating Women Who Tell Our Stories”. The BBC website has some great learning tools, including a piece by social historian Professor Amanda Vickery, who tells the story of five female artists and their pivotal artistic contributions during the 17th and 19th Centuries in The Britain that Women Made.
The series features artists including Angelica Kauffman who, in 1768, was one of only two female artists among the founding members of the London’s Royal Academy, and who identified as a history painter at a time when it was very difficult for women to be taken seriously as artists and hard for them even to train. It also features Lady Elizabeth Butler who became the most successful war artist of her time (the late 1800s), despite there still only being a few women in the 18th and 19th centuries who were accepted as artists, especially in an area that was considered to be the most masculine of subjects.
There are countless more women who have helped shape art and culture throughout history and here at Collier & Dobson, we publish the work of almost twenty accomplished female artists (as well as an equal number of highly talented male artists too), including sculptors Jenna Gearing, Gill Parker, and Sophie Louise White; wildlife artists Bev Davies, Nicky Litchfield, Dominique Salm, Bev Horsley, Aaminah Snowdon and Becky Mair; landscape artists Alena Carvalho, Jo Quigley, Nicola Wakeling, and Rosa Sepple; narrative artists Sam Toft, and Joe Ramm; equestrian artists Tabitha Salmon and Josie Appleby; and abstract artists Jen Allen, and Ilse Michielsen.
Head over to our online gallery to browse through the spectacular collection of sculpture, limited edition prints and original paintings from this gifted group of women...you may even find a special gift for that most cherished of women in our lives, Mum.