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Chicago, Judy, 1939- . Videotape Collection of Judy Chicago, 1971-2004: A Finding Aid

Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University


Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University

© President and Fellows of Harvard College

Descriptive Summary

Call No.: Vt-122
Repository: Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University
Creator: Chicago, Judy, 1939-
Title: Videotape collection of Judy Chicago, 1971-2004
Date(s): 1971-2004
Quantity: 63 videocassettes
Language of materials: Materials in English.
Abstract: Videotapes of artist, feminist, and writer Judy Chicago.

Immediate Source of Acquisition:

Accession numbers: 96-M151, 96-M169, 98-M61, 98-M133, 99-M164, 2001-M16, 2002-M18, 2002-M45, 2004-M45, 2004-M54, 2004-M76
These videotapes were included with the papers of Judy Chicago (MC 502) that were given to the Schlesinger Library between 1996 and 2004 by Judy Chicago.

Processing Information:

Processed: June 2009
By: Joanne Donovan

Access Restrictions:

Access. Unrestricted. An appointment is necessary to use any audiovisual material.

Conditions Governing Use:

Copyright. Copyright varies from tape to tape. Where applicable, Judy Chicago retains her copyright in the videotapes during her lifetime. Permission to publish any visual materials by Judy Chicago must be obtained from Judy Chicago or Through the Flower. Other copyrighted materials found in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns.
Copying. Videotapes may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures.

Preferred Citation:

Judy Chicago Videotape collection, 1971-2004; item description, dates. Vt-122, reel #. Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.

Related Material:

There is related material at the Schlesinger Library; see Audiotape collection of Judy Chicago, 1968-2001 (T-319) and Judy Chicago papers, 1947-2004 (MC 502).


Judy Chicago, an artist, writer, and feminist, was born Judy Cohen in Chicago, Illinois, July 20, 1939. The daughter of Arthur M., a labor organizer, and May (Levenson) Cohen, a medical secretary, Chicago adopted the surname Chicago in 1969. She was married to Jerry Gerowitz 1961 until his death in 1963, married and divorced from Lloyd Hamrol (1969-1979), and has been married to Donald Woodman since 1985.
After receiving her B.A. (1962) and M.F.A. (1964) from the University of California, Los Angeles, Chicago received recognition for her minimalist sculpture through an exhibition at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (1967) and a one-woman show at California State University at Fullerton (1970).
Increasingly sensitive to the need for an environment in which women artists could express themselves freely without regard to an art world dominated by males, Chicago pioneered feminist art education programs through her experience as assistant and founder of the Women's Art Program California State University at Fresno (1969-1971) and as instructor and co-founder of the Feminist Studio Workshop at the California Institute of the Arts (1971-1973). Her experience with the Feminist Art Program culminated in Womanhouse (1971), an installation she directed with the artist Miriam Shapiro. In 1973, Chicago organized the Feminist Studio Workshop, the first independent feminist art program in the country.
Chicago is best known for The Dinner Party (1974-1979), a multi-media installation honoring the achievements of women in Western civilization. Created with the participation of hundreds of volunteers, The Dinner Party was viewed by approximately one million people in exhibitions in the United States and abroad between 1979 and 1988. In 1978, Chicago established a non-profit organization, Through the Flower Corp., to support the completion of The Dinner Party. Through the Flower continues to this day as an "arts organization whose mission is to create a cultural legacy built upon the vision embodied in the work of Judy Chicago through education, exhibition and preservation" (www.judychicago.com). Since 2002, The Dinner Party has been permanently housed at the Brooklyn Museum of Art in New York.
Committed to using art as a vehicle for intellectual and social change, Chicago created The Birth Project (1980-1985), a series of birth and creation images for needlework executed by skilled stitchers around the country, and the Holocaust Project (1984-1993) in collaboration with her husband, photographer Donald Woodman. A frequent lecturer, she is the author of Through the Flower: My Struggle as a Woman Artist (1975), Beyond the Flower: The Autobiography of a Feminist Artist (1996), and a number of books on her work.


The videotape collection is arranged in five series:


The collection includes interviews, documentaries, lectures, and seminars relating to Judy Chicago's professional life. Titles represent those on the tape label or the video itself, where present. Dates, if supplied, reflect the original taping or release date of the material. The bulk of the videotapes are in VHS format, except where noted. Also represented in the collection are copies of two motion pictures from the collection, see MP-49. For related papers, see the finding aid for the Judy Chicago papers, MC 502. The videotape collection is arranged in five series:
Series I, THE DINNER PARTY AND RESPONSES TO THE WORK,1980-1996 (#1-24), contains videotapes related to the making of, and the debate surrounding, the multi-media art installation The Dinner Party.
Series II, OTHER ART PROJECTS, 1985-1995 (#25-31), is arranged in two subseries:
Subseries A, The Birth Project, 1985-1987 (#25-26), contains videotapes focusing on the collaborative nature of the project, including interviews with participants.
Subseries B, Holocaust Project, 1985-1987 (#27-31), contains informal discussions, interviews and documentaries related to the making of the Holocaust Project.
Series III, SEMINARS AND LECTURES, 1990-2004 (#32-49), is arranged in two subseries:
Subseries A, Through the Flower seminars, 1992-1994 (#32-40) , contains Through the Flower-sponsored seminars about women in the arts, held at various locations throughout Santa Fe.
Subseries B, Lectures and public events, 1990-2004 (#41-49), contains Judy Chicago speaking at various events and universities in the United States and Japan, largely about her work and the beginnings of the feminist art movement.
Series IV, INTERVIEWS, 1979-2004 (#50-58), contains interviews with, and television appearances by, Judy Chicago over the course of her career
Series V, DOCUMENTARIES, 1971-2002 (#59-63), contains five documentaries about Judy Chicago, her approach to collaborative art projects, and her place in the feminist art movement.

Container List

Additional Index Terms

Art exhibitions
Art, Modern--20th century
Artists--United States
Childbirth in art
China painting
Feminism in art--United States
Group work in art--United States
Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945), and art
Jewish women--United States
Motion pictures
Needlework--United States
Sex discrimination against women--United States
Women artists--United States
Women in art
Amend, Kate
Demetrakas, Johanna
Judy Chicago, 1939--Exhibitions
Judy Chicago, 1939--Public opinion
Lippard, Lucy R.
Through the Flower Corp.
University of the District of Columbia
Woodman, Donald