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15 Oct 2019

Symposium: WOMEN TO RECKON WITH in Arts and Business

As part of the exhibition New Nuances, women artists in and around Cobra, the Cobra Museum and Deloitte are organising a symposium on the representation of women in art and society. The symposium is on October 15 between 1:00 pm and 6:00 pm in the auditorium of the Cobra Museum. Speakers: TittyMag (Cathelijne Blok), Marianne van Boxelaere, Karen Kurczynski and Melissa Raczak.

Image: Still from film Ferdi by Shinkichi Tajiri

Within the art and museum world, we are catching up in terms of the position of women in society and art. There is a great number of exhibitions on this subject. From 1001 women in the 20ste century in the Amsterdam Museum, Masterly Women in Stedelijk Museum Schiedam to solos by Jacqueline de Jong in the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam and Charlotte van Pallandt in Museum de Fundatie. Despite this attention and the willingness of museums to give priority to women artists in their acquisitions, still only 2% of the Netherlands Collection is made by a woman. Auction prices for paintings made by women are 48% lower than those by men.

In the business world, the percentage of women in managerial positions has risen over the past ten years, and more and more organisations support women in breaking through the glass ceiling. Nevertheless, the absolute top of companies still consists mainly of men. There still does not seem to be a balance between men and women in the labour market. There is a strong appeal for women’s quota and a growing number of organisations are working on behalf of women in the business world.


The symposium WOMAN TO RECKON WITH in Arts and Business tries to shed light on the state of affairs. What is the position of women in art and business, and what can we do to strengthen it? Can the art world learn from the business world and vice versa?


1-2 pm Guided tour of the New Nuances exhibition by TittyMag

2-2:30 pm Interview with Karen Kurczynski by Hilde de Bruijn

Coffee break

3-3:30 pm Lecture on Inclusive Leadership by Melissa Raczak

3:40-4 pm Lecture on Sexism in the Visual Arts by Marianne van Boxelaere

4-4:45 pm Panel discussion with Melissa Raczak, Marianne van Boxelaere and Stefan van Raay

4:45-6 pm Guided tour and drinks (optional)



  • Cathelijne Blok from TittyMag (the Netherlands)

TittyMag is an intersectional feminist art collective founded by Cathelijne Blok. TittyMag offers a platform for creative talent involved in feminism, inclusiveness or empowerment in order to enter into a dialogue and create a safe haven. Offline, once a month, they organise an interactive event at another location, a Titty Talk! to make feminism accessible to anyone who wants to join the conversation. During WOMEN TO RECKON WITH in Arts and Business, TittyMag also organises an interactive tour of the exhibition New Nuances.

  • Karen Kurczynski (United States) about Else Alfelt and Sonja Ferlov Mancoba

Karen Kurczynski is an associate professor of modern and contemporary art history at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She is the author of The Art and Politics of Asger Jorn: The Avant-Garde Won’t Give Up (Routledge, 2014) and curator of Human Animals: The Art of Cobra at the NSU Art Museum Fort Lauderdale. She will soon be publishing an extensive study on Cobra, in which she also critically reflects on the role of women in the Cobra movement.

  • Marianne Van Boxelaere (Belgium) on gender inequality in the visual arts

Marianne Van Boxelaere studied Art Sciences at UGent and the Universitat de Barcelona, and Cultural Management at UAntwerpen. In addition to her work at the Flemish Department of Foreign Affairs, she writes scenarios, short stories, articles and essays. Recently she published the article “Seksisme in de beeldende kunst in cijfers” (“Sexism in the visual arts in numbers”) in Rekto:Verso, about gender inequality in the visual arts.

  • Melissa Raczak (Partner Deloitte, United States) about inclusive leadership

Melissa Raczak is a Partner in the Deloitte Consulting Technology, Media and Telecom team. She has 16 years of experience on leading and managing global transformational programmes within the cable and mobile industry. In addition, Raczak is active in Women@Deloitte, to empower and support women in their careers within Deloitte. Raczak’s talk will be about inclusive leadership in business, explaining why an inclusive management policy is the right investment for every company.



This symposium has been made possible by Fonds21 and Deloitte.

This symposium is free of charge*, but the number of participants is limited.

You are required to sign up in advance via

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