Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art

“Not Yet Written Stories – Women Artists' Archives Online” – a research and exhibition project


The project “Not Yet Written Stories – Women Artists' Archives Online” will focus on the heritage of women artists in Europe, investigating their visibility within processes of history writing. Bringing together partners from Poland, Croatia, Slovenia and Latvia, the project will comprise four international art exhibitions (in Ljubljana, Riga, Warsaw and Zagreb), the creation of an innovative on-line repository, a series of workshops and a conference that will later be followed by a publication.

For several years, the Arton Foundation (Warsaw) and its partners have been implementing archive digitisation projects in an attempt to reconsider the European avant-garde art of the second half of the twentieth century. Their main goal has been to create an innovative online database – a public cross-border repository developed together with students from various academic disciplines within the humanities. This project has offered students the opportunity to learn new methods for researching artists’ archives and to become acquainted with digitisation processes. Using a similar project structure, the new project “Not Yet Written Stories - Women Artists' Archives Online” will work to address the visibility of avant-garde women artists within European art heritage. 

The scholarly “sin of omission” and the exclusion of work by women from the canon of art history have resulted in the erasure of the achievements of numerous artists. Such omissions have been widespread, occurring regardless of socio-political situation. However, women artists in culturally and economically “peripheral” countries, such as those formerly behind the Iron Curtain, have been at risk of double exclusion on the grounds of both geography and sex. This project aims to counteract this situation and to raise awareness of these issues among a younger generation of researchers, art historians and cultural experts.

Within the framework of “Not Yet Written Stories - Women Artists' Archives Online”, a series of workshops will be organised for participating students and researchers. The results of these workshops will form the basis for four international exhibitions in Warsaw, Ljubljana, Riga and Zagreb. The workshops will concentrate on researching the archives of women artists in each respective participant country and will examine the exclusion of women artists from art historical narratives, going on to question the consequences of that exclusion. Selections from the material gathered in the course of this research will be digitised and made available to the public for free. Around 1550 graphic works, drawings, paintings, installations, handwritten texts and photos will be put online. Finally, workshop participants will have the opportunity to attend a conference to present their research. The project will culminate with the production of a publication gathering the most important results of this research.

The opening of the exhibition at the Salon Akademii gallery is scheduled for May 16, 2020. The Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art will open its exhibition at the Latvian National Museum of Art on November 13, 2020. Information about the other exhibitions will be announced soon.


Arton Foundation, Warsaw

Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art, Riga

Office for Photography, Zagreb

SCCA - Ljubljana Centre for Contemporary Arts, Ljubljana 

Co-funded by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union.

The Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art's partner in Riga is the Latvian Art Academy.

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