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Website of the Week — National Museum of Women in the Arts

Time again for our Website of the Week, when we showcase interesting and innovative online destinations. Our web guide is VOA's Art Chimes.

March is Women's History Month, and the theme this year is "Women's Art: Women's Vision," so this week we highlight the National Museum of Women in the Arts, online at

The museum was established in the 1980s to redress the second-class treatment women artists have often received from museums, galleries, and art historians.

WHITE: "There's an under-representation of women, and there were lots and lots of holes in art histories. There were prominent women artists, starting probably in the 15th and 16th centuries, but if you had read any of the standard art texts prior to about 1985, 1990, you would never have known it."

Howard White is the communications director at the National Museum of Women in the Arts, which opened its Washington building two decades ago and now extends its reach internationally; one out of five web visitors comes from outside the U.S.

The museum's website includes the work of women artists featured in the temporary exhibits - currently, Portuguese painter Paula Rego and American sculptor Louise Nevelson. In addition, you'll find a good sampling of works from the museum's extensive holdings.

WHITE: "There's of course the permanent collection, so you can go in and take a look at some of the representative samples of everything from probably the 15th century on."

TEXT: Dig a little deeper at and you'll find an extraordinary database called CLARA, which includes 18,000 women artists.

WHITE: "This is an ongoing project that will bring together every major woman artist in Western and, hopefully at some point, Asian history so that people will have a one-stop resource - everybody from art history professors down to elementary school art teachers."

Teachers may also find it's worth checking out a section called Arts, Books and Creativity, where there are lesson plans and other materials to help teach about art.

Experience some exceptional work by women artists at the National Museum of Women in the Arts online at, or get the link from our site,