The Real Betty Parsons (VA4121.02)

Anne Thompson

Gallerist Betty Parsons was every bit as maverick as the Abstract Expressionist painters she so famously debuted. An artist in her own right and a lesbian, she championed women, gay and bisexual artists and other practitioners outside the white, macho midcentury scene. A reconsideration of this history shapes a course that positions Parsons within today’s discourse as a hybrid cultural producer on the vanguard of queer politics and feminism. Parsons’s story has additional relevance for Bennington, where many of her artists lectured or exhibited and she herself had her first solo painting show in 1966. In exploring curatorial possibilities for a new Betty Parsons exhibition at Bennington, the class addresses the complications of reframing a legacy and presenting the full dimensions of an artist with a multifaceted career.

Prerequisites: Previous coursework in art history, gender studies, or American history preferred. Professor’s permission required. Please email a paragraph explaining your interest in/prep. for the course to
Credits: 2
M 2:10pm - 4:00pm; Th 2:10pm - 4:00pm (second seven weeks)
Maximum Enrollment: 16
Course Frequency:
This course is categorized as 4000, All courses, Anne Thompson, Monday and/or Thursday Afternoons, Second Seven Week, Two Credit, Visual Arts (VA), and tagged , , , , , , , , .