Les grandes dames de l’art

Maria Helena Vieira da Silva

Fanny Michaëlis, Maria Helena Vieira da Silva, 2021
© Fanny Michaëlis

The podcast “Les grandes dames de l’art” (“Great Women in Art”) gives a voice to women artists of the 20th century. They speak of their work, their lives, the world around them and their achievements. Let us go in search of their presence, their secrets. Let us rediscover the hidden history of women artists through their voices.

Up until very recently, it was believed that abstraction was invented and practised solely by men. However, after re-examination, it seems like it was the other way around: many women abandoned figurative art, as did their male colleagues at the time, to singularly inhabit the vast continent that is art. Maria Helena Vieira da Silva is one of them. Her story is quite extraordinary. Her work was recognised very early on when she was in her forties. She received many prizes, the Grand Prix National des Arts in 1966 and the Legion of Honour in 1979. Her work has been shown worldwide and is now part of some of the most prestigious museum collections in the world: the Guggenheim in New York, the Tate Modern in London, and the Pompidou Centre in Paris. In short, Vieira da Silva is one of the rare female artists to have risen to fame during her lifetime.

“Les grandes dames de l’art” is a podcast produced by AWARE: Archives of Women Artists, Research and Exhibitions, in collaboration with the Institut national de l’audiovisuel, with the support of Maison Veuve Clicquot and the Ministry of Culture’s Délégation à la transmission, aux territoires et à la démocratie culturelle.

Coordinated by: Mathilde de Croix and the AWARE team
Directed by: Élodie Royer
Music by: Juliano Gil
Credits: Andrew Nelson
Sound Editing: Basile Beaucaire
Scientific Advisors: Catherine Gonnard and Marjorie Micucci
Translation: Beth Gordon
French Voice: Camille Morineau
English Voice: Lou Doillon
Translation of the Artist’s Voice: Eve Dayre

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