This letter was in was the result of a request from 17 women art students who were matriculates in the Feminist Art Program at CalArts in the spring of 1974. Part of an Arts festival catalog; the young women had planned a section called “Letter to a Young Woman Artist” inspired by Czech poet Rainer Maria Rilke’s, Letters to a Young Poet. The following is a response by respected mature-woman artist and feminist, Lucy Lippard.
To a Young Woman Artist,
I’m sorry this has to be so short, because I have a lot I’d like to talk about with you, but try to read between the lines. I hope you’re angry but get it over with fast and use it while you’ve got it. I hope you don’t stop being angry now and then until things are better for all women, not just artists; I hope you’re working from yourself and know how to fuck the art world pressures when you get out there; and I hope you’re working for everybody else too; I hope you’ll be the one to figure out a way to keep art from being used the wrong way and for the wrong things in society; I hope you make your art accessible to more people, to all women and to everybody; I hope you think about that now and aren’t waiting till you make it, because that’s likely to be too late. I hope you remember that being a feminist carries with it a real responsibility to be human. I hope and I hope and I hope . . . love, Lucy Lippard
Info compiled from “new thoughts on the black arts movement” Edited by Lisa Gail Collins and Margo Natalie Crawford