"All I Want : portuguese women artists from 1900 to 2020"
: a case study

  • Maria de Brito Serafim Cardoso Matias (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


The current report refers to a curricular internship experience at the Plano Nacional das Artes (National Plan for the Arts or PNA), between September 2020 and March 2021, focused on the assistance to the production of the exhibition All I Want: Portuguese Women Artists from 1900 to 2020, curated by Helena de Freitas and Bruno Marchand, planned to open at the BOZAR: Palais des Beaux-Arts (Brussels, Belgium) beginning of 2021. Following the roof fire that took place during the month of January 2021 at the BOZAR, the exhibition was canceled. Since the show was adapted to the Gulbenkian Museum, in Lisbon, from June 2nd to August 23th 2021, most of the initially planned activities (the production of the exhibition and its accompanying publication) were conducted and, as its production was the main focus of the internship, this report presents an analysis of the exhibition. The research emerges from this analysis and wishes to understand the ways in which women artists exhibitions may contribute to how cultural institutions advocate gender equality in the art world, and in particular if women artists’ shows are the way to fight for this equal representation within contemporary art institutions. The primary case study is the previously mentioned exhibition, although further examples that may be read as smaller case studies throughout the history of feminist-based shows, in the North American and European contexts, will be applied. The theoretical framework for the research rests on culture studies, gender studies and curatorial studies and the current report aims to analyse the positioning of Western cultural institutions, in regard to gender equality, focusing particularly on the role of art and curatorial practices in producing knowledge and, as such, acting upon social phenomena.
Date of Award3 Jun 2022
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorLuísa Santos (Supervisor) & Carles Guerra (Co-Supervisor)


  • Women artists
  • Curatorial activism
  • Cultural institutions
  • Visual arts exhibitions
  • Culture studies


  • Mestrado em Estudos de Cultura

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