Agnes Noyes Goodsir (1864 – 1939) A Lesbian Painter

The Parisienne by Agnes Goodsir
The Parisienne by Agnes Goodsir

Painting by Agnes Goodsir
Painting by Agnes Goodsir

Girl on couch by Agnes Goodsir, 1915
Girl on couch by Agnes Goodsir, 1915

Agnes Noyes Goodsir (1864 – 1939)

Girl With A Cigarette by Agnes Goodsir Agnes Noyes Goodsir, born in Australia was encouraged to go to Paris to study paintings in 1899 by her family. She remained there until 1905. Returning to Europe in 1906 she settled in London. There she met ‘Cherry [aka the divorcee Mrs Rachel Dunn] became Agnes’ artist’s model, close companion and the dominant subject of later works. Agnes and Cherry settled in Paris. Agnes’ career developed, especially in portraiture. In 1926 she was the third Australian to be elected to the Salon Nationale des Beaux Arts (after Rupert Bunny and Bessie Davidson), an important accolade. In 1927 Agnes returned to Australia for nine months to much fanfare and at the peak of her career. She then went back to Paris where she remained for the rest of her life with her beloved Cherry. Agnes died in 1939, Rachel in 1950. They are buried in the same grave outside Paris.’ (Quote from article by Peter Di Sciascio)

Above right: Girl With A Cigarette by Agnes Goodsir


Grace Crowley ‘Abstract painting’ 1947

Video and text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra 2010.

Grace Crowley (1890 – 1979) Australian Artist and Modernist Painter

‘Grace Crowley, also known as ‘Smudge’, is believed to have been in a relationship with Anne Dangar between about 1915 and 1929. Anne Dangar studied and then taught at Julian Ashton’s Sydney Art School, at the same time as Grace Crowley. The two went to France together in 1926 where they studied painting for several years, including at the influential cubist school Académie Lhote. [Anne] Dangar returned to Australia in 1928, Crowley in 1930. [Anne] Dangar travelled back to France in 1930 and settled at Albert Gleize’s Art Colony, Moly-Sabata, in southern France where she immersed herself in pottery, for which she became most famous. She remained there for the rest of her life. (…)
Grace appears to have had short-lived artistic and/or personal relationships in Sydney with Dorrit Black and Rah Fizelle, eventually settling into a lasting relationship with Ralph Balson. All of Grace’s relationships were with artists, and the professional aspect was clearly important. (…)’ – Out Here: Gay and Lesbian Perspectives VI, Chapter 9: Australian Lesbian Artists of the Early Twentieth Century by Peter Di Sciascio.

Related Links

Grace Crowley: being modern, 23 December 2006 – 6 May 2007 at National Gallery of Australia.
Anne Dangar at moly-sabata: tradition and innovation by the National Gallery of Australia

Kathleen O’Connor ‘In the studio’ c. 1928

‘Kathleen O’Connor ‘In the studio’ c. 1928′, a video published by National Gallery of Australia.

Australian Painter Kathleen O’Connor (1876 – 1968)

Kathleen O’Connor was born in New Zealand in 1876 but grew up largely in Western Australia. She showed early talent as an artist. This, combined with her independent and determined personality, and her upper-class background, set the foundation for a life-long career as an artist, unmarried and childless. Kathleen’s forte was portraiture and still life. She (…) spent a large part of her life, almost 50 years, overseas. She was most at home in Paris.’ – Out Here: Gay and Lesbian Perspectives VI, Chapter 9: Australian Lesbian Artists of the Early Twentieth Century by Peter Di Sciascio.

Margaret Preston (1875–1963)

Slideshow with photos by Australian painter Margaret Preston.

Margaret Preston (1875–1963)

Margaret Rose McPherson (later Margaret Preston) was born in Adelaide, Australia in 1875. She studied art at the prestigious National Gallery of Victoria Art School in 1889. And then she went on to further her studies at Adelaide’s School of Design. She set up her own studio and started taking private students in Adelaide. Later she taught at St Peter’s College, Adelaide and Presbyterian Ladies’ College, Adelaide. Her first relationship was with Bessie Davidson, another artist, and a pupil four years her junior. They travelled and studied extensively together in Europe, largely on Davidson’s allowance, between 1904 and 1910. After their relationship ended, Margaret returned home and set up a studio with Gladys Reynell, who became Margaret’s intimate companion until about 1919 when Margaret married Bill Preston. In 1912 Margaret (at that time called Rose) and Gladys went to Europe, living and studying in Paris and Brittany and enjoying life as artists until 1913 when they moved to live, paint, study ceramics and teach in London; Just before returning to Australia Gladys and Rose was teaching pottery to soldiers at Seale Hayne Neurological Hospital in Devon.
Margaret became highly influential artist during the 1920s to 1940s, known for her modernist works as a painter and printmaker and for introducing Aboriginal motifs into contemporary art.

Related Link

Margaret Preston at Wikipedia
Bessie Davidson
Gladys Reynell

After Our Bodies Meet: From Resistance to Potentiality

Heather Cassils
Becoming An Image Performance Still No. 1, (ONE National Archives, Transactivations, Los Angeles), 2012, C-print face mounted to Plexiglas, 45 x 30 in. Photo: Heather Cassils with Eric Charles. Courtesy of the artist and Ronald Feldman Fine Arts.

Leslie-Lohman Museum presents an exhibition of queer feminist artists exploring the body as site of resistance, envisioning a positive queer future. The exhibition After Our Bodies Meet: From Resistance to Potentiality features work from Heather Cassils, Laura Aguilar, Cathy Cade, Tee A. Corinne, Zanele Muholi, Chitra Ganesh, Allyson Mitchell, Zanele Muholi, Catherine Opie, Sophia Wallace, and Chris E. Vargas; these artists subvert the mythologies and ideals surrounding lesbian and transgender bodies and foreground queer bodies obscured by invisibility.

After Our Bodies Meet: From Resistance to Potentiality

Curated by Alexis Heller
Exhibition Dates: June 5 – July 27, 2014
at Leslie + Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art, 26 Wooster Street in the SoHo neighborhood of New York City.

Related Links

See the press release about After Our Bodies Meet: From Resistance to Potentiality