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Museum Presents “Women in Contrast”

Marilyn Bridges (American, b. 1948) Kazhitna Glacier, Denali, Alaska, 1990, from the portfolio, Heightened Perspectives, 1990

As photography evolved into a viable expressive media over the course of the 20th century, select American artists seized the opportunity to explore a wide range of concepts and move beyond traditional feminine subject matter.   A selection of this iconic imagery by innovative modernist and contemporary female photographers is the subject of Women in Contrast, presented by the Hofstra University Museum through August 18, 2017, at the David Filderman Gallery.

This original exhibition, curated by Kristy L. Caratzola, the Hofstra University Museum’s former collections manager, features:  Berenice Abbott, Diane Arbus, Marilyn Bridges, Nancy Burson, Imogen Cunningham, Donna Ferrato, Toni Frissell, Mary Ellen Mark, and Dorothy Norman. The 33 photographs were selected from the Hofstra University Museum’s collection of more than 900 photographs.

Mary Ellen Mark (American, 1940-2015), Father and Son, Dallas, Texas, 1987, from the portfolio In America
Mary Ellen Mark, Father and Son, Dallas, Texas, 1987, from the portfolio In America

Abbott’s documentary style photographs captured the people and architecture of 1930s New York City and illustrated principles of physics for science textbooks. In the 1960s, Arbus created powerful and emotional portraits of people considered to be on the fringes of society. Mark’s photographs of the 1980s and 1990s reveal her empathy and humanistic point of view. Ferrato documents the physical changes to her Tribeca, New York neighborhood. The images produced by these photographers range in subject matter from portraits and landscapes to society’s outcasts and cityscapes. The photographs do not indicate the gender of the artist and do not support societal assumptions about what “feminine” images should look like.

Funding support has been provided by Astoria Bank, the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, and Barbara Roux.

This exhibition is presented in association with the 17th Berkshire Conference on the History of Women, Genders, and Sexualities to be held at Hofstra University June 1-4, 2017. For more information or to register, please visit

On Friday, April 21, there will be a curator’s talk with Kristy Caratzola, as she discusses the exhibition Women in Contrast from 3-4 p.m. A reception immediately follows the curator’s talk from 4-5 p.m.

For more information about this exhibit and public programs please call (516) 463-5672 or visit the Hofstra University Museum website at

Hofstra University Museum has been awarded the highest honor a museum can receive, continued accreditation by the American Alliance of Museums (AAM). Approximately 3% of museums nationwide have earned this distinguished recognition. Accreditation certifies that the Hofstra University Museum operates according to professional standards, manages its collections responsibly and provides quality service to the public.

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