Bowdoin College Museum of Art

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There is a Woman in Every Color



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There is a Woman in Every Color

2015.61
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Artist

Elizabeth Catlett

Title

There is a Woman in Every Color

Creation Date

1975

Medium & Support

color linoleum cut, screenprint, and woodcut  on Arches paper

Dimensions

22 1/4  x 29 15/16 in. (56.52  x 76.04 cm)

Credit Line

Museum Purchase, Lloyd O. and Marjorie Strong Coulter Fund

Accession Number

2015.61

Copyright

This artwork may be under copyright. For further information, please consult the Museum’s Copyright Terms and Conditions.

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African American artist Elizabeth Catlett contributed to the civil rights movement with politically engaged sculptures and prints. A feminist and teacher, she became the first female professor and head of the sculpture department at the Escuela Nacional de Bellas Artes in Mexico City in 1958. Made around the time of her retirement, this print renders a black woman’s dignified face as a positive image in black, while her negative image appears in white, perhaps reflecting the artist’s belief that racial difference is merely seeing two sides of the same coin. The multicolored row of figures references the color bar, a form of measurement for registering color accuracy in printing that is usually later removed. In this instance, Catlett’s inclusion of this graphic standard enacts an integration of the margins (or marginalized) that can be read as a metaphor for her commitments to global civil rights and equality.
 


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