Rebecca Ann Rosen and Séraphine are both comic book artists living in Belgium. Their works are together in the Rature gallery, within the exhibition Héritières, because they are currently passionate about historical women's figures and a feminist rewriting of their stories. Mayken Verhulst, a 16th-century painter and printmaker whose work has been hidden by her status as the “grandmother and stepmother” of the Brueghels, is at the centre of this new project by Rebecca Ann Rosen. Séraphine, in turn, is interested in the harsh reality of the origin of the story Snow White, hidden behind industrial princesses.
How can we discover and represent these women, who are few and far between in the history books? The common artistic approach of these two authors requires meticulous historical research, a prerequisite for a credible alternative version of these historical narratives. Without entirely breaking with known narratives - written and transmitted by men - they disturb the notion of the fixed nature of history.
The comic strip, a medium that is willingly intimate and personal, makes it possible to tell these stories from another point of view: that of the women who lived through them, and that of those who are re-discovering them. To establish a privileged relationship between them, and then share it with the readers.
Giving visibility to the works and achievements of the women who have gone before us allows us to rewrite and pass on a fairer history. It is also a very effective way of shining a light on the present. We’ll discuss all of this - and maybe a bit more - with Rebecca Ann Rosen and Séraphine, driven by Lyse Vancampenhoudt.