Issue 286

Women in the arts

Photo of WOW conference

It’s time to face the truth: our cultural landscape is ‘man-made’. And the course of history won’t be corrected by women alone, says Jude Kelly.

I often feel sad when I survey the history of culture. Art is one of the central loves of my life, and yet as a woman it often makes me melancholy. I leaf through rich seasons of classical music, pass through the wonderful collections of our art galleries and museums, peruse the retrospectives of renowned film directors, the canon of performance and literature - and I feel sorrow that over thousands of years so very few females appear to have contributed to the formal act of creative...

Also in this feature

Photo of volunteers at Poet in the City

Being a young, female leader in the arts is a novelty - one Isobel Colchester has come to realise she must explore and celebrate, if she is to help challenge gender inequalities.

Photo of women working at table

The evidence suggests that a diverse workforce will bring a diverse audience. So it’s time for the arts to be bold and lead the diversity charge, says Sam Colt.

Photo of scene from Muscovado

Catherine Love explains why giving emerging artists no-strings-attached support is so important.

Photo of audience at festival

A production company run by two women with seven children between them is rewriting the rules that separate work and family life, explains Sarah Bird.

Photo of harlequin in dressing room

Are female theatre directors in the UK successful because they followed the linear, patriarchal route – or did they do it their own way, asks Amy Golding.

Photo of two women

The arts need leaders who can convey a clear vision and empower their staff. Well, parents practice these skills every day and it’s time we started valuing their experience, says Justine Themen.