This class was a fantastic opportunity for BAHP students to live and breathe the works of Artemisia Gentileschi, a woman who used art as a medium of resistance in her own personal and professional battles, living in a time when women’s rights did not yet exist. 

As part of an ongoing series to  raise awareness of and celebrate Artemisia’s life and works as we draw closer to the opening of her first ever UK show at the National Gallery in 2020, BAHP are devising a series of workshops (and VERY exciting collaborations) to get more people to be aware her life and works. 

Throughout this day workshop we created multiple draped and dramatic tableaux of Artemisia’s work from which to paint. With a single-model tableaux in the morning and the privilege of a double model special throughout the afternoon session, putting a contemporary spin on Artemisia’s powerful baroque compositions of women that were so revolutionary in her own lifetime, modelled for by the one and only @lilyholder

Our resident Painter/Art-Historian Luisa-Maria MacCormack introduced the history of each tableaux with a 10 minute talk before the pose was set up, examining the personal poignancy, the innate sense of drama and colour and of course, the historical feminist narrative so iconic of Artemisia’s oeuvre.

Our life-model Lily was free to interpret the initial quick poses in her own style, before settling into the longer poses aiming to recreate Artemisia’s Mary Magdalene with Melancholy and one of her versions of Judith and the Maidservant, where the relationship between these two women is a particular point of focus.

modelled by @lilyholder

HYSTERICAL BODIES and MIDWIFERY at Bournemouth University

This Easter BAHP took our HYSTERICAL BODIES talk on the road to Bournemouth for an amazing session with Bournemouth Universities’ midwifery department.

hysterical womb.jpg

Through this unique class we explored the of the intersection between Art, Science, Anatomy, Medicine and Women, uncovering theories of the ‘Wandering Uterus’, the anatomical Venus, ‘Female Hysteria’ Scold’s Bridles, Female Genital Mutilation, Chinese Foot Binding, and the Beauty Myth.

The afternoon’s drawing session was an open workshop that made use of the fabulously practical midwifery school’s day to day birthing tools, from latex labia to felt babies and midwifery after-birth kits.

Students were encouraged to draw quickly, reacting to each object in turn to create a fast paced and collaborative drawing free of pre-conceptions. The midwifery aids were both fascinating to draw, but also engaged the group in unexpected conversations; why were the aids so depersonalized, why were there no dolls, baby-sized or woman-sized, of anything other than a caucasian baby? Questions arose about the misogyny still present in the way that women can be treated throughout their birthing experience, and both positive and negative experiences, professional and personal, were shared freely with the group.

We had a phenomenal time taking HYSTERICAL BODIES on the road, and we’re looking forward to our next schools booking coming up in June! Meanwhile, check out our Sculpting the Goddess class or our PAINTING ARTEMISIA!

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