We sat down (virtually and briefly!) with the brilliant woman and change maker that is Jennifer Higgie and asked our pressing questions!
Jennifer Higgie is a writer and editor at large of frieze magazine. She is the author of the novel Bedlam, the author and illustrator of the children’s book There’s Not One, and is the editor of The Artist’s Joke. She is currently writing a book on historic female self-portraits titled The Mirror & the Palette; she also writes screenplays. She was a member of the Turner Prize jury in 2008. Jennifer's Instagram account (@bowdownpodcast) is focused on bringing recognition to female artists and is our daily dose of happiness! Read our Q&A with Jennifer below.
Jennifer, What advice would you give an artist entering the art world?
Do it for the right reasons – you probably will never get rich from it, it will be incredibly difficult and often challenging, but if there’s nothing else you could ever imagine doing – go forth with a glad and generous heart, let your imagination run riot and work hard.
Is there something different that women artists have to do when entering the art world in order to be successful? What is your advice to women artists?
It depends what country you’re in – some are more open to women’s creativity than others. My advice to women artists – and any artist – is that your job is a privilege. It will be a struggle. Honour it.
What do you think we have to do in order for more women artists to be represented in commercial galleries and museums?
Be vocal about the inequities. Protest imaginatively. Be constructive. Talk with each other and with the powers that be. Galleries need to know that it’s no longer acceptable that art history is deemed to be solely a story about the creative endeavours of white men.
Do you currently have any projects in the works that support women artists and brings recognition to past female artists?
I have worked at frieze magazine for more than 20 years, and gender equality has always been of prime important to us. I also have an Instagram devoted to women in art history, and am working on a book (titled The Mirror & the Palette) that explores the story of women’s self-portraits since the 17th-century. Frieze is about to launch a podcast that I host; it’s titled ‘Bow Down: Women in Art History’. For it, I ask my guest – a female writer, artist, curator or historian – to nominate a woman artist from the past to whom we should bow down.