For our Texas women photographers discrimination, harassment and representation are still huge hurdles for those pursuing a career through the medium (both as artists, or through more commercial outlets). Whether at museums, or in the workplace ONLY 10-14% of photography on average comes from women. This isn’t just an American problem, it’s a global one as well. Female photographers make up less than 9% of the collective average of photographic works on display in 8 of the leading European museums for photography (Tate Modern, Centre Pompidou, MACBA, Istanbul Modern Art Museum, Mumok, Stedelijik Museum, KIASMA, Hermitage). Some institutions like the Tate Modern and Hermitage are actually less than 1%.
These stats reflect similar percentages for women visual artists across the board as well, and the shocking news that women artists in the US earn $20,000 less a year than their male counterparts. According to the Texas Cultural Trust one in every fifteen jobs ties back to the creative workforce, but the under representation of women is choking us out of our Texas creative economy.
So I asked myself what could I do to help change this, and thus I created the Texas Women’s Photography Group, a social community on Facebook to try to connect women photographers from all over Texas ranging in skill level from amateur to professional. The end goal is to help elevate and spotlight the talented women photographers in our midst, help develop and refine new skill sets, to nurture the next generation of women photographers too, and to drive more women photographers to success.
We’ve managed even in such a challenging year to have safe, socially distanced, size capped outings where we have captured the comet neowise over Texas skies (avoiding rattlesnakes and tarantulas), enjoyed shooting a Texas sunset over a sunflower field (as seen above), shot a church designed by the architect of the national cathedral, and other bits of Texana and Americana too.
If you’re a woman with Texas connections and an interest in photography you are invited to join us. Please spread the word too!