she is woman
The name ‘Christine Rosamond‘ might not ring a bell, but given that she was one of the most published artists of the 1970s, you’ve probably seen her work (or at the very least, her influence). Rosamond was a self-taught painter from Oakland, California who came to prominence in 1972 after showing at an art fair in Los Angeles. Her watercolor and oil portraits of strong, independent, stylish women synchronistically aligned with the growing feminist movement and they became much sought-after from likeminded ladies of the era. She signed a contract with gallery owner Ira Cohen who sold her original paintings and also brought her work to the mass market by printing Rosamond Women onto posters and greeting cards. So coveted were her illustrations that at one point, she was outselling even Norman Rockwell and Salvadore Dali. Rosamond’s soft palette and inventive use of negative space were often knocked-off by lesser artists and commercial art companies trying to capitalize on her popularity.
Rosamond’s personal life was a series of joyful highs and heart-breaking lows — from her abusive childhood to her string a marriages — and while this emotional ride wasn’t terribly obvious in her work, her ‘I am woman, hear me roar’ spirit remained her signature throughout her career. (Sadly, Rosamond passed away in 1994 in a drowning accident off the coast of Big Sur.) Today, with the re-emergence of a fiercely united feminist movement, coupled with fashion’s non-stop adoration of 70s fashion, Rosamond’s portraits are as relevant as they ever were.