Women Pushing Boundaries With Metal Art


Whether it be conscious or subconscious, the general public typically places mediums into either fine or decorative arts. Metal works especially are gendered and filed into one of these two categories- with smelting being seen as masculine and high art, and jewelry making being feminine and crafty. Heavy Metal, the current Women to Watch exhibit at the National Museum of Women in the Arts, challenges theses assumptions. The submission requirements called for any use of metalwork, giving a broad range of interpretation. Pieces range from jewelry to abstraction, all with a shared goal to stop gendering of metal art.

For Further Reading:

Read more about the work and artists showing.


Discussion Question:

What are other fields that are gendered? Why do we assign these roles to certain professions?


Action Item:

Find a person in a field that is dominated by the other gender. Ask them ways in which they would like to see change.



Read more on Hyperallergic | Image: Rana Begum, No. 161, 2008; Paint on powder-coated aluminum, 98 1/2 in. high, 16 sections; Photo by Philip White; © Rana Begum