Cynthia Navaretta Memorial

Video edited by Judith Kerman

Cynthia Navaretta Memorial

Cynthia Navaretta, a native New Yorker, was born Cynthia Greenberg on January 31st, 1923, she was a graduate architect and mechanical engineer, a rarity in those days, but made a name for herself in what had been traditionally a male-dominated contemporary art world, beginning in the 1940s.

Over a long life she befriended thousands of artists, working most ardently on behalf of women in the arts and women artists of color, specifically. A quiet force, yet one who earned wide respect. She gained recognition in her educated field by designing the air conditioning and heating systems for the New York World’s Fair in 1964. She published Women Artist’s News and established Mid-March Arts Press in the 1970s.

As a member of The Club in the 1950s, Navaretta was one of just a few women to penetrate that male preserve of Abstract Expressionists. As a result of her early access to the members of the New York School painters and sculptors, she and her late husband, the painter Emanual Navaretta, amassed a noteworthy collection of art. She went on to start a series of artist service organizations and serve on the boards of others including: The Artists Certification Committee of the New York Department of Cultural Affairs, The New York City Loft Board, The Foundation for the Community of Artists, The College Art Association, the Artists Talk on Art steering committee and later board of directors, the Women’s Caucus on Art, the International Association of Art Critics and a number of others.

Among her many published books were: Women Artists of the World, Mutiny in the Mainstream: Talk that Changed Art 1975 – 1990 (with Judy Seigel), Gumbo Ya Ya: Anthology of African-American Artists and a Guide to Women’s Art Organizations, to name just a few.

She is survived by her son Miles Navaretta, his wife Deborah and a grandchild.

MC: Susan Schwalb
Primary Memorial Speakers: the series of primary speakers will include (in alphabetical order):

Katie Deepwell, publisher
Kari Grimsby, photographer and website designer
Leslie King Hammond, artist, arts administrator, curator and art historian
Cassandra Langer, art critic, art historian and artist
Kim Levin, art critic and writer
Susan Platt, art historian, art critic
Howardina Pindell, artist
Susan Schwalb, artist , art writer
Douglas I. Sheer, artist, writer and Artist Talk on Art Chairman Emeritus
Dorothy Sinclair, actress and friend

Additional speakers are being allotted time at the conclusion of these remarks.

Remembering Cynthia Navaretta

Remembering Cynthia Navaretta

Cynthia Navaretta, writer, editor, publisher and steadfast voice for women in the arts, passed away on May 18. She was 97. Born Cynthia Green on January 31, 1923, she earned a Master’s degree in mechanical engineering from Columbia University (1948), after having studied at the University of Wisconsin and New York University. In 1953, she married architect/painter Emanuel Navaretta and gave birth to a son, Miles. Emanuel was a founding member of the New York Artists Club, which included Franz Kline, Willem de Kooning and Ad Reinhardt. Her husband died in 1977. Her brother, dancer Martin Green, died in 2003.

As lifelong friend Dorothy Sinclair writes: “One of the earliest female engineers, she deserted that profession to become a leader in the movement to recognize women artists.” Cynthia Navaretta was not only a leader; she was truly a force to be reckoned with! Known for her outspoken and straightforward manner, she did not hesitate to criticize as well as praise. She could be counted upon to be honest with absolutely everyone.

In the early 1970s, she helped found the Women’s Caucus for Art, the Coalition of Women’s Arts Organizations and Women in the Arts. She served on numerous arts committees and boards, such as NYC’s Artist Certification Committee, SoHo 20 Gallery and the Foundation for the Community of Artists. In the late 1980s, she assumed the role of Acting Director of FCA, when its former director stepped down.In 1975, she began publication of the Women Artists Newsletter, which evolved into the magazine, Women Artist News. Circulation eventually reached a readership of 10,000. Contributors included artists such as Joyce Kozloff, Miriam Schapiro, Sylvia Sleigh, Nancy Spero and May Stevens.

In 1979, Navaretta authored the Guide to Women’s Art Organizations and Directory for the Arts. The archive she diligently maintained of women artists in the U.S. (1970-2005) is now housed in the Smithsonian Archives of American Art.

By Virginia Maksymowicz

Helène Aylon Remembered

Helène Aylon Remembered

L to R: Susan Fisher Sterling, Stephanie Sherman, Janice Nesser-Chu, Sheila Levrant de Bretteville, Marilyn Hayes, Susan King, Juana Guzman, Brenda Oelbaum, Helène Aylon, and Tomie Arai at the WCA Lifetime Achievement Awards at the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington DC in 2016. See images of the event at: or download the catalog

Helène Aylon: 1931–2020, May Her Memory Be a Blessing

BRANDEIS UNIVERSITY and writer AMY POWELL honor the late Jewish feminist artist Helène Aylon.



This program will distribute $250,000 in grants, up to $2,500 apiece, to women-identifying visual artists over the age of 40 who have been impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.

Anonymous Was A Woman (AWAW) has partnered with the New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) to launch an emergency relief grant program to support artists impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. The program will distribute $250,000 in unrestricted grants, up to $2,500 apiece, to artists who have experienced financial hardship from loss of income or opportunity as a direct result of the crisis. As with AWAW’s annual award, the program is open to women-identifying visual artists over the age of 40 in the United States and territories, and aims to address the unique challenges faced by artists in middle age or older, particularly at this critical time. A link to the application form will be made available here on Monday, April 6 at 10:00 AM EDT.



APPLICATION CLOSES: Wednesday, April 8, 2020, 6:00 PM EDT

APPLICATION NOTIFICATION: By Thursday, April 30, 2020

Due to anticipated high demand, applications will be accepted from Monday, April 6 through Wednesday, April 8. All applications will be reviewed after the closing date. Funds will be awarded to eligible applicants in the order in which applications are received.


  • Applicants must be visual artists identifying as women (who work in Digital/New Media, Drawing, Film/Video, Installation, Painting, Photography, Sculpture).
  • Applicants must be 40 years or older on the date their application is submitted.
  • Applicants must be able to demonstrate activity in their artistic discipline over the past 5 years.
  • Applicants must show documented losses of income for the period of February 1 – July 30, 2020.
  • Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents in any of the 50 states, District of Columbia or U.S. territories.


  • Description of losses along with documentation in the form of signed contracts, email confirmations, letters of agreement or materials describing the confirmed date of activity and fee to be paid.
  • Proof of cancellation of activity in the form of state-based shutdown communication, email or personal communication about closure/job loss/opportunity postponement, etc).
  • Amount requested. Any amount up to $2,500.
  • Demonstration of artistic activity over the last 5 years. This can be in the form of a CV/resume, link to website, copies of press or recent grant awards.
  • Proof of age. Upload passport or state-issued ID.

All questions should be directed to


The Quilts of Pauline Parker

The Quilts of Pauline Parker

The Quilts of Pauline Parker

When my mother was a girl she started capturing the streets of her hilly town of Alton, Illinois, in paint. She made her way to Chicago to study at the Art Institute of Chicago where her work was included in many of their national and international watercolor shows in the 1940’s. Also a gifted teacher, Pauline shared her love of art making at Northbrook High School for many years.

When she and my father, a sculptor and builder, retired to rural Wisconsin, she continued to paint the landscape and began to make quilts. First they were pattern quilts with patches from Oshkosh jeans and bacon bags, my father’s favorite. Then stories emerged on biblical themes, women’s narratives, scenes of nature, and a pure fantasy that was all her own. She loved to show the quilts around the Midwest and talk about her ideas.

From the late 1980s to 2003, she completed more than 50 quilts. After she passed away, I started the Parker Art Legacy, LLC in 2014 to preserve and promote her work. We are honored and thrilled to have the Milwaukee Art Museum present her work in “The Quilts of Pauline Parker” on exhibit from March 20 to July 19, 2020.

Featured Image: Moses, quilt with appliqué, 91”x 80”, 1988
Photography by Patrick Young.


Anita Hill and the Senate Judiciary Committee, quilt with appliqué, 75”x 62”, 1988