“Women Pathmakers” Exhibit Celebrates Triumphs of Women 100 Years After Women’s Suffrage


Joaquin De La Torre

Jessica Sabogal and Shanna Strauss, “The Invisible Labor of Women of Color,” acrylic on found wood, depicts two queer women of color and size embracing.

Joaquin De La Torre, Staff Reporter

On Jan. 23, a new exhibit titled “Women Pathmakers” debuted at the Euphrat Museum of Art at De Anza College.

The exhibit, in conjunction with Silicon Valley Reads 2020 and their theme, “Women Making it Happen,” honors the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage in the U.S.

“There’s a lot of history to be learned here about some of the women pioneers who maybe didn’t get the recognition that their male counterparts did,” said Diana Argabrite, Director of Euphrat Museum of Art, “A key theme of this exhibit is for women to continue to disrupt the status quo.”

Joaquin De La Torre
Hung Liu’s “Wen Xiu, Imperialist consort,” jacquard tapestry.

Most of the artists focus and dedicate their content to women who pave the way for women to advance in male-dominated industries.

“There are empowering works out there, works that will teach you about what’s going on currently, and what happened in the past and I think issues around women affect everybody,” Argabrite said.

Keeping inclusivity in mind, there will also be works dedicated to the invisible labor of women of color from acting as a translator for family members to being healers of their community.

A piece commissioned specifically for the exhibit is a collaborative piece by Bay Area artists Jessica Sabogal and Shanna Strauss dedicated to “queer women of size” said Argabrite.

April Liss, 28, nursing major, said she wants the exhibit to have a good amount of historical content showing the progression made by women since the times of the suffragettes.

The exhibit houses the works of 18 different female artists such as Hung Liu, Julia Feld, Fariba Nejat, Jen Myhre, Keerat Kaur and more.

“There are quite a few Instagram-able moments,” said Argabrite.

Joaquin De La Torre
Jen Myhre’s “Suffragist Tea Parties,” mixed media educates students on voting rights.

The 6.5′ tall by 2′ wide contemporary twist on ancient female buddha ceramic sculptures by artist Wanxin Zhang is one of the show’s most anticipated attractions.

Argabrite pointed out another “Instagram-able” piece which is the large scale tapestry by artist Hung Liu that depicts Wenxiu, the first Chinese empress to ever divorce her husband.

Jack Kelly, 22, nursing major, said he wants the exhibits to have an interactive component that will allow him to engage with the art on a level deeper than visual.

Each piece of art about a pathmaker will be displayed with an attached letter. The letter, written by the artists, will be in the narrative voice, as though it were written by the pathmaker about their own life.

In this way, the observer interacts with art pieces through the letters.

“If you are a female, or you know a female, or a person walking around in a female-identified body, then you’re going to relate to the show,” said Argabrite.

The exhibit’s opening reception will occur Wednesday, February 12 from 5:30 p.m – 7:30 p.m with artists and author Julian Guthrie.