© 2020

Females in the Frame

Women, Art, and Crime


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xv
  2. Penelope Jackson
    Pages 11-38
  3. Penelope Jackson
    Pages 39-55
  4. Penelope Jackson
    Pages 57-100
  5. Penelope Jackson
    Pages 101-125
  6. Penelope Jackson
    Pages 127-159
  7. Penelope Jackson
    Pages 161-182
  8. Penelope Jackson
    Pages 183-198
  9. Penelope Jackson
    Pages 199-214
  10. Back Matter
    Pages 215-222

About this book


This book explores the untold history of women, art, and crime. It has long been widely accepted that women have not played an active role in the art crime world, or if they have, it has been the part of the victim or peacemaker. Women, Art, and Crime overturns this understanding, as it investigates the female criminals who have destroyed, vandalised, stolen, and forged art, as well as those who have conned clients and committed white-collar crimes in their professional occupations in museums, libraries, and galleries. Whether prompted by a desire for revenge, for money, the instinct to protect a loved one, or simply as an act of quality control, this book delves into the various motivations and circumstances of women art criminals from a wide range of countries, including the UK, the USA, New Zealand, Romania, Germany, and France. Through a consideration of how we have come to perceive art crime and the gendered language associated with its documentation, this pioneering study questions why women have been left out of the discourse to date and how, by looking specifically at women, we can gain a more complete picture of art crime history. 


criminals forge theft gallery painting gender language art crime history motherhood vandals dealer

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.TaurangaNew Zealand

About the authors

Penelope Jackson is an art historian and curator based in New Zealand.  A former gallery director, Jackson is a founding trustee of the New Zealand Art Crime Research Trust. She is the author of Art Thieves, Fakers & Fraudsters: The New Zealand Story (2016) and has contributed to the Journal of Art Crime and Art Crime and its Prevention (2016). Jackson has curated major exhibitions, including: award-winning Corrugations: The Art of Jeff Thomson (2013), The Lynley Dodd Story (2015), An Empty Frame: Crimes of Art in New Zealand (2016) and Katherine Mansfield: A Portrait (2018).

Bibliographic information


Females in the Frame: Women, Art, and Crime is an informative and thorough overview of women in art crime and an interesting read to account for untold stories. Just like the majority of art collections in art repositories worldwide that have an overwhelming representation of male artists, art history accounts tend to feature male protagonists. Jackson’s objective, hopefully, was not to show that there were as many female thieves and forgers but to uncover the underrepresented side of the history of art crime. This easy-to-read book provides us with new insights into the history of art crime and suggests why and how women’s involvement is omitted from historical documentation.” (Yuchen Xie, Art Law Review)