'Women can't paint'

February 7 2013

Image of 'Women can't paint'

Picture: Telegraph

So says German artist Georg Baseltitz (above). From The Telegraph:

In an interview with Der Spiegel, Baselitz said, “women don’t paint very well. It’s a fact.” He backed up his claim by saying that work by women artists “simply don’t pass the market test, the value test. As always, the market is right."

If Elizabeth Vigee Le Brun's self-portrait in the National Gallery ever came up for sale, I reckon it would sell for at least £5m, probably more. So I guess the market can't always be right, Georg.

Update - a reader writes:

Last week I went and did a little talk to two groups of 13 year olds at an all-girls school. My subject was how women are perceived in art and why paintings by women sell for far less than those by men. 

I started by asking them to shout out names of famous artists whilst one student wrote them on the board. Both groups named only men!!  Out of about 35 artists not one female came up. 

I also gave them this quote from Sewell from The Independent back in 2008 which is quite amusing… 

"The art market is not sexist," Mr Sewell said. "The likes of Bridget Riley and Louise Bourgeois are of the second and third rank. There has never been a first-rank woman artist.

"Only men are capable of aesthetic greatness. Women make up 50 per cent or more of classes at art school. Yet they fade away in their late 20s or 30s. Maybe it's something to do with bearing children."

I wonder if Brian and Georg are buddies.

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