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Woman in the Window (postponed)

Our final exhibition of 2020 will explore the enigmatic motif of the ‘woman in the window’, used by artists across centuries and cultures from ancient civilisations to present day. With exciting loans from artists including Louise Bourgeois (1911–2010), Marina Abramović (b. 1946), Edgar Degas (1834–1917) and Howard Hodgkin (1932–2017), the exhibition will explore how the motif underscores issues of gender and visibility, and how artists have employed this motif to portray different ideals, morals or fears throughout history. 

“Artists have taken up the device of the window as a kind of ‘portal’ between two realms: the real and the imagined, the sacred and the profane, between this life and the afterlife or between the public and the private.” 

Jennifer Sliwka, curator

The exhibition will explore themes of voyeurism, visibility, gender and the gaze, bringing together 40 works in a range of media including sculpture, painting, collage, contemporary photography and installation art. Highlights include Hodgkin’s Girl by a Window (1964), Abramović’s Role Exchange (1975) and Bourgeois’ My Blue Sky (1989–2003), as well as Dulwich Picture Gallery’s own masterpiece, Rembrandt’s Girl at a Window (1645), a springboard for the exhibition.

Images: Tom Hunter, Woman Reading Possession Order, from the series Persons Unknown. 1997; Viscountess Clementina Hawarden, Clementina Maude, 5 Princes Gardens, c. 1863-64. Photo: Victoria and Albert Museum, London; Louise Bourgeois, My Blue Sky, 1989-03 © The Easton Foundation/VAGA at ARS, NY and DACS, London 2020, Gerrit Dou, A Woman playing a Clavichord, c. 1665. By Permission of Dulwich Picture Gallery