Four new selections will be added to the “Women’s Voices” display
New York, NY – New York City Council Speaker Corey Johnson and the New-York Historical Society’s Center for Women’s History announced an additional round of portraits for the “Women’s Voices: Shaping the City” exhibition in City Hall. “Women’s Voices” was created last year to honor a diverse selection of women activists whose contributions to New York City history deserve public recognition. The exhibition in City Hall reflects Speaker Johnson and the New York City Council’s commitment to addressing the gender disparity in public artwork and monuments around the City.
The four new portraits are of librarian Pura Belpré, civil rights activist Elizabeth Jennings Graham, LGBTQ activist Edie Windsor and math scholar Chien-Shiung Wu. They will join the collection of posters that includes Shirley Chisholm, Frances Perkins, and Antonia Pantoja.
“As we celebrate Women’s History Month, we must make sure that women who shaped New York City get the recognition they deserve. For too long, portraits and statues of men dominated City Hall but that changed last year through our partnership with the New-York Historical Society. Now those who come to this storied building will learn about trailblazing women like Edie Windsor, Pura Belpré, Chien-Shiung Wu and Elizabeth Jennings Graham. The Council will continue to fight for women’s equality in every corner of life,” said Speaker Corey Johnson.
“We’re honored to once again collaborate with the Speaker’s Office to showcase the important contributions of women to New York City. Like the stories on view in our new exhibition Women March, these portraits reveal how women made their voices heard and advocated for equality,” said Valerie Paley, New-York Historical Society senior vice president, chief historian, and director of the Center for Women’s History.
The New Yorkers featured in the exhibition are:
- Pura Belpré; first Puerto Rican librarian in New York City and celebrated storyteller and folklorist
- Elizabeth Jennings Graham; African-American civil rights activist and founder of the City’s first kindergarten for African-American children
- Edie Windsor; LGBTQ activist and lead plaintiff of the landmark United States v. Windsor Supreme Court case
- Chien-Shiung Wu; Chinese-American math and physics scholar at Columbia University
“Women have built our city’s politics, culture, business, and institutions. The City Council’s ‘Women’s Voices’ exhibit focuses attention to women who built this City. Their photos offer a stark contrast to the traditionally male dominated images in art. I’m thrilled we are partnering with the New York Historical Society to make this happen,” said Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer, Chair of the Council’s Cultural Affairs, Libraries, and International Intergroup Relations Committee.
“As Chair of the Committee on Women & Gender Equity, I am delighted and deeply moved that the City Council and New York Historical Society have joined forces again to honor some of the women who have made a lasting impact on our city. This exhibition is a wonderful start to our celebration of Women’s History Month, and begins to address the pervasive absence of women from what is considered ‘official’ history. Visitors to City Hall can now learn about iconic (but perhaps under-appreciated) figures like Pura Belpré, Elizabeth Jennings Graham, Edie Windsor, and Chien-Shiung Wu. In unique ways, these women changed New York, and the world, for the better,” said Council Member Helen Rosenthal, Chair of the Council’s Women & Gender Equity Committee.
“As the new Co-Chair of the Women’s Caucus, I am extremely proud to join Speaker Corey Johnson and the New York Historical Society’s Center for Women’s History in announcing the next round of portraits of trailblazing women on display at City Hall. This partnership has recognized incredible women leaders from diverse backgrounds who have made significant contributions to our society. I am thankful that we are acknowledging these women for their work and that visitors to City Hall will have the opportunity to learn about their history. As a city, we must continue to highlight our women leaders and ensure that their legacies remain alive,” said Council Member Vanessa Gibson, Co-Chair of the Council’s Women’s Caucus.
“Our young women and girls cannot become what they cannot see – bold leaders, activists, innovators, and scholars. It is paramount that we continue to share HERstory, illustrating what women can achieve and exceed through the examples set by trailblazers. The ‘Women’s Voices: Shaping the City’ exhibition is an opportunity to showcase women of all backgrounds who broke through barriers and shattered glass ceilings as champions of gender inclusion and equity. I want to thank Speaker Corey Johnson and the New York Historical Society for creating a space that not only inspires but empowers women to dream big and persist,” said Council Member Farah N. Louis, Co-Chair of the Council’s Women’s Caucus.
View last year’s release and listing of last year’s portraits here.
Here is a link to posters from the exhibition. Each poster’s required caption is indicated in the corresponding file name. Please give appropriate credit for publication.
On view at the New-York Historical Society until August 30, Women March commemorates the centennial of the 19th Amendment—which granted women the right to vote in 1920—as it surveys the efforts of a diverse array of women to expand American democracy in the centuries before and after the suffrage victory in an immersive exhibition featuring imagery and video footage of women’s collective action over time.
About the New-York Historical Society and New-York Historical’s Center for Women’s History
The New-York Historical Society, one of America’s preeminent cultural institutions, is dedicated to fostering research and presenting history and art exhibitions and public programs that reveal the dynamism of history and its influence on the world of today. Founded in 1804, New-York Historical has a mission to explore the richly layered history of New York City and State and the country, and to serve as a national forum for the discussion of issues surrounding the making and meaning of history.
New-York Historical’s Center for Women’s History is the first of its kind in the nation within the walls of a major museum. At the Center, we explore the lives and legacies of women who have shaped and continue to shape the American experience. As a hub for scholarship and education, the Center demonstrates how women across the spectrum of race, class, and sexuality exercised power and effected change. Guided by a committee of distinguished historians and informed by the latest research, the Center features permanent installations, temporary exhibitions, and a vibrant array of talks and programs, enriching the cultural landscape of New York City and creating new opportunities for historical discovery. Women March is on view at the Museum through August 30, 2020. To learn more, visit nyhistory.org.