In order to pay homage to the greats that came before, we have created our Historical Heroines archives.

Browse the pioneers of photography; Historical Heroines who created work during the 18th Century up to the mid-20th Century and Legacy Heroines who were active during the mid-20th Century up to the present day.

Yva

One of the premier fashion and portrait photographers of the 20s and 30s in Germany, ‘Yva’ produced elegant fashion portraits, photomontages and advertising work in Berlin from 1925 until the Nazi’s closed her studio. She was killed in...

Anne Fischer, ca. 1935-36

Anne Fischer

German photographer Anne Fischer (1914 - 1986) left Germany in 1937 to become a fine portrait photographer and to specialise in dance photography....

Portrait of Elisabeth Meyer by Ernest Rude. Courtesy of Preus Museum

Elisabeth Meyer

Elisabeth Meyer (1899 – 1968) was an early Norwegian photojournalist of the 1920s and 30s who documented her daring trips to Iran and India, as well as the local Sami people of Finnmark in her native Norway....

Marie Høeg

A prominent member of the Norwegian feminist movement in Horton, Marie Høeg along with partner Bolette Berg, experimented with gender identity and performance....

Lou Lander Cat. 96

Lou Landauer

German photographer Lou Landauer, who was active during the 1930s - 1950s, is recognised today for her photograms of botanical subjects....

Maud Sulter, Self Portrait, 2002, 828 x 560 mm, large format Polaroid photograph. The Estate of Maud Sulter ©The Estate of Maud Sulter.

Maud Sulter

Maud Sulter was a contemporary fine artist, photographer, poet, educator and curator. Her work explored her Ghanaian heritage....

Olive Cotton

Olive Cotton was one of the most important 20th century Australian modernist photographers. Based in Cowra, her pioneering work spanned the 1930s and 40s...

Nancy Sheung

Nancy Sheung

Chinese photographer Nancy Sheung was determined to break all the rules and conventions of her time, with unusual means to success....

Self Portrait Vivian Maier, New York, 1954.© Estate of Vivian Maier, Courtesy of Maloof Collection and Howard Greenberg Gallery, NY.

Vivian Maier

Vivian Maier is one of the most prolific and distinctive American photographers of the mid to late twentieth century...

Cleo from 5 to 7 Agnès Varda

Agnès Varda

Agnès Varda is considered a forerunner of the French New Wave, exploring new approaches to editing, visual style and social and political engagement...

American Girl in Italy, Florence, 1951 Ruth Orkin © Mary Engel & APAG.us

Ruth Orkin

Photojournalist Ruth Orkin was voted one of the Top Ten Women Photographers by the Professional Photographers of America in 1959...

Ingeborg Strobl

Ingeborg Strobl

Austrian visual artist and photographer who focused primarily on conceptual art as a form of narrative expression....

Alphabetical List

A

  • Aase Goldsmith (1942 – 2015)
  • Abigail Heyman (1942 – 2013)
  • Agnes Varda (1928 – 2019)
  • Alexandra Boulat (1962 – 2007)
  • Alice Austin (1866 – 1952)
  • Alice Guy Blaché (1873 – 1968)
  • Alice Schalek (1874 – 1956)
  • Alison Gernsheim (1911 – 1969)
  • Amelia Elizabeth Guppy (1808 – 1886)
  • Amélie Galup (1856 – 1943)
  • Ana Mendieta (1948 – 1985)
  • Anja Niedringhaus (1965 – 2014)
  • Ann Cooke (1796 – 1870)
  • Anna Atkins (1799 – 1871)
  • Anne Brigman (1869 – 1950)
  • Anne Fischer (1915 – 1986)
  • Anni Schulz  (1897 – N/K)
  • Annie Blake (1848 – 1928)
  • Anno Wilms (1935 – 2016)
  • Arlene Gottfried (1950 – 2017)
  • Augusta Mostyn/Henrietta Augusta Nevill , Lady (1830 – 1912)

B

  • Barbara Ker-Seymer (1905 – 1993)
  • Barbara Pflaum  (1912 – 2002)
  • Beatrice Freyberger  (1901 – N/K)
  • Běla Kolářová (1923 – 2010)
  • Berenice Abbott (1898 – 1991)
  • Bertha Beckmann (1815 – 1901)
  • Bessie Raynor Parkes (1829 – 1925)
  • Betti Mautner (1892 – 1988)
  • Birgit Jürgenssen (1949 – 2003)
  • Blanche Henrietta Pechell née Shelley (1841 – 1898)
  • Bobbi Baker Burrows (1945 – 2018)

C

  • Camilla Koffler/Ylla (1911 – 1955)
  • Carolee Schneemann (1939 – 2019)
  • Caroline Emily Nevill, Lady  (1829 – 1887)
  • Caroline Margaret Kerrison, Lady (1819 – 1895)
  • Caroline Taylor (1810 – 1876)
  • Catherine Leroy (1944 – 2006)
  • Catherine Verschoyle (1800 – 1882)
  • Cecilia Glaisher (1828 – 1892)
  • Christina Broom (1862 – 1939)
  • Claire Aho (1925 – 2015)
  • Claude Cahun (1894 – 1954)
  • Clementina Hawarden, Lady (1822 – 1865)
  • Compton Collier (1899 – 19770
  • Constance Fox Talbot (1811 – 1880)
  • Consuelo Kanaga (1894 – 1978)
  • Corinne Day (1962 – 2010)
  • Constance Stuart Larrabee (1914 – 2000)

D

E

  • E Lennie (1818 – Unknown)
  • E Toussaint Welcome, Madame (1885 – 1956)
  • Edith Barakovitch (1896 – 1940)
  • Edith Glogau  (1898 – 1970)
  • Edith Tudor Hart  (1908 – 1973)
  • Eiko Yamazawa (1899 -1995)
  • Elisabeth Hase (1905 – 1991)
  • Elisabeth Meyer (1899-1968)
  • Elizabeth Anne Finn née McCaul  (1825 – 1921)
  • Elizabeth Eastlake, Lady  (1809 – 1893)
  • Elizabeth Fulhame (fl. 1794)
  • Elizabeth ‘Lizzie’ Le Blond (1860 – 1934)
  • Elizabeth Louisa How  (1821 – 1893)
  • Elizabeth Stockdale Wilkinson  (1799 – 1871)
  • Elizabeth Vignoles  (1813 – 1880)
  • Elizabeth Withington née Kirby  (1825 – 1877)
  • Ellen Auerbach (1906 – 2004)
  • Elly Niebuhr  (1914 – 2013
  • Else Ernestine Neuländer-Simon/Yva  (1900 – 1944)
  • Emily Anne Payne-Frankland,Lady (1821 – 1913)
  • Emma Barton  (1872 – 1938)
  • Emma Frances Johnston  (1834 – 1905)
  • Emma Thomasina Llewellyn née Talbot  (1808 – 1881)
  • Emmy Andriesse (1914 – 1953)
  • Emmy Bernatzik  (1904 – 1977)
  • Erika Hubatschek  (1917 – 2010)
  • Esther Bubley  (1921 – 1998)
  • Eugenie Goldstern  (1893 – 1942)
  • Eva Besnyö  (1910 – 2003)
  • Eve Arnold  (1912 – 2012)
  • Evelyn Hofer  (1922 – 2009)

F

  • Fanny Foster/Georgiana Fanny Julia Foster (1891-1975)
  • Fay Godwin (1931 – 2005)
  • Florence Henri  (1893 – 1982)
  • Florestine Perrault Collins (1895 – 1988)
  • Frances Anna Georgiana Kinnaird née Ponsonby, Lady  (1817 – 1910)
  • Frances Benjamin Johnston (1864 – 1952)
  • Frances Elizabeth Bree*  (1795 – 1906)
  • Frances Jocelyn, Lady  (1820 – 1880)
  • Frances Monteith  (1805 – 1898)
  • Frances Sally Day  (1816 – 1892)
  • Francesca Woodman (1958 – 1981)
  • Franki Raffles (1955 – 1995)
  • Franziska Möllinger  (1817 – 1880)
  • Friedl Dicker  (1911 – 1944)
* dates not verified

G

H

  • Hanna Maynard  (1834 – 1918)
  • Hannah Höch  (1889 – 1978)
  • Hannah Wilke  (1940-1993)
  • Hansel Mieth (1909 – 1998)
  • Harriet Ann Tucker (1808 – 1875)
  • Harriet V S Thorne (1843 – 1926)
  • Harriet Tytler  (1828 – 1907)
  • Hazel Larsen Arche  (1921 – 2001)
  • Helena Almeida (1934 – 2018)
  • Helen Chadwick  (1953 – 1996)
  • Helen Gee  (1919 – 2004)
  • Helen Levitt  (1913 – 2009)
  • Helen Messinger Murdoch (1862 – 1956)
  • Henrietta Augusta Nevill , Lady/Augusta Mostyn  (1830 – 1912)
  • Hilla Becher  (1934 – 2015)
  • Homai Vyarawalla  (1913 – 2012)

I

J

  • Jan Groover  (1943 – 2012)
  • Jane Bown  (1925 – 2014)
  • Jane Martha (1801 – 1882)
  • Jane Wigley (1820 – 1883)
  • Jennie Louise Van Der Zee/Madame E Toussaint Welcome  (1885 – 1956)
  • Jessica Piazzi Smyth (1815 – 1896)
  • Jessie Fergus (1794 – 1863)
  • Jessie Mann (1805 – 1867)
  • Jessie Tarbox Beals (1870 – 1942)
  • Jo Spence (1934 – 1992)
  • Julia Margaret Cameron (1815 – 1870)
  • Julia Pirotte (1907 – 2000)
  • Julia Shannon (1812 – 1852)
  • Justine Henrietta Ross née Macrae (1813 – 1894)

K

  • Karimeh Abbud  (1893 – 1940)
  • Käthe Buchler (1876 – 1930)
  • Kati Horna  (1912 – 2000)
  • Khadija Saye  (1992 – 2017)

L

M

  • Madame d’Ora/Dora Kallmus (1881 – 1963)
  • Madame E Toussaint Welcome/Jennie Louise Van Der Zee (1885 – 1956)
  • Madame Yevonde/Yevonde Middleton  (1893 – 1975)
  • Margaret Bourke-White  (1904 – 1971)
  • Margaret Dreghorn Baillie  (1821 – 1870)
  • Margaret Harker  (1920 – 2013)
  • Margaret J Newton (fl. 1849)
  • Margaret Watkins (1884 – 1969)
  • Margarethe Gross  (1902 – 1985)
  • Margarita “Rita” Weir Martin (1875 – 1958)
  • Maria Chambefort  (1818 – 1875)
  • Mariana Yampolsky (1925 – 2002)
  • Marianne Bergler (1897 – 1980)
  • Marie Cosindas  (1923 – 2017)
  • Marie Hansen (1918 – 1969)
  • Marie Høeg (1866 – 1949)
  • Marion Palfi  (1907 – 1978)
  • Marion Post Wolcott  (1910 – 1990)
  • Marta Astfalck-Vietz (1901 – 1993)
  • Marta Hoepffner  (1912 – 2000)
  • Martha Holmes (1923 – 2006)
  • Martine Franck  (1938 – 2012)
  • Mary Ann Robb  (1829 – 1912)
  • Mary Dillwyn  (1816 – 1906)
  • Mary Ellen Mark  (1940 – 2015)
  • Mary Emma Lynn  (1813 – 1903)
  • Mary Jane Matheson née Percival, Lady  (1821 – 1896)
  • Mary Rosse, Lady (1813 – 1885)
  • Maud Sulter  (1960 – 2008)
  • Minna Keene  (1861 – 1943)

N

O

  • Olive Cotton ( 1911 – 2003)
  • Olive Edis  (1876 – 1955)
  • Ottilia Reizman  (1914 – 1986)

P

  • Pauline Trevelyan, Lady (1816 – 1866)
  • Penny Tweedie  (1940 – 2011)
  • Pepa Feldscharek  (1899 – 1962)
  • Polixeni Papapetrou   (1960 – 2018)

Q

Why not be the first to nominate a historical or legacy Heroine whose name begins with Q?

R

  • Reva Brooks (1913 – 2001)
  • Rita (Margarita) Weir Martin (1875 – 1958)
  • Rollie McKenna (1918 – 2003)
  • Rosa Jenik  (1853 – 1913)
  • Rose Mandel (1910 – 2002)
  • Ruby Washington  (1952 – 2018)
  • Ruth Bernhard  (1905 – 2006)
  • Ruth Orkin  (1921 – 1985)

S

  • Sarah Angeline Acland (1849 – 1930)
  • Sarah Anne Bright (1793 – 1866)
  • Sarah Holcomb (early 19th C.)
  • Sarah Louise Judd  (1802 – 1886)
  • Shima Ryū  (1823 – 1900)
  • Shirley Baker  (1932 – 2014)
  • Susan Eliza Evans née Gisborne  (1834 – 1891)
  • Sibylle Bergemann (1941 – 2010)

T

  • Thereza Story-Maskelyne (1834 – 1926)
  • Tina Modotti (1896 – 1942)
  • Tish Murtha (1956 – 2013)
  • Toni Frissell (1907 – 1988)
  • Trude Fleischmann  (1895 – 1990)
  • Trude Geiringer (1890 – 1981)

U

Why not be the first to nominate a historical or legacy Heroine whose name begins with U?

V

W

  • Winifred Casson  (1908 – 1969)
  • Winifred Hall Allen (Active 1930s)

XYZ

Active at some point between the late 18th Century
and the mid-20th Century

Discover More

Active at some point between the mid-20th Century
and the present day

Discover More

In 2019, we asked the public to choose their top Hundred from this list.  The results can be found here.

Someone missing from our archive? Let us know!