Four Women Added to Walls of New York’s City Hall

By N. Jamiyla Chisholm Mar 03, 2020

Women’s History Month kicked off this past Sunday, and to honor those who pushed for change, the New York City Council and the New-York Historical Society’s Center for Women’s History added four new portraits to the walls of City Hall for the “Women’s Voices: Shaping the City” exhibition, the City Council announced March 2.

The new portraits include librarian Pura Belpré; civil rights activist Elizabeth Jennings Graham, LGBTQ activist Edie Windsor and math scholar Chien-Shiung Wu. The four will join other activists in the “Women’s Voices” collection from last year, which includes Shirley Chisholm and Antonia Pantoja. The art was chosen by the city council speaker’s office and the New-York Historical Society.

“As we celebrate Women’s History Month, we must make sure that women who shaped New York City get the recognition they deserve,” City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, who introduced the new portraits, noted in a release. For too long, portraits and statues of men dominated City Hall but that changed last year through our partnership with the New-York Historical Society. Now those who come to this storied building will learn about trailblazing women … The Council will continue to fight for women’s equality in every corner of life.” 

As a complement to “Women’s Voices,” which is open to the public at New York’s City Hall, the New-York Historical Society is exhibiting “Women March,” until August 30, to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment.

“Women have built our city’s politics, culture, business, and institutions,” said council member Jimmy Van Bramer. “The City Council’s ‘Women’s Voices’ exhibit focuses attention to women who built this City. Their photos offer a stark contrast to the traditionally male-dominated images in art.”