Our Story

The Project

Women in Print tells the stories of women from the north of England, through print and design. Our project aims to shine a light on women’s history and provide a platform for women working in the design and print industry to showcase the wealth of creative talent we have in the north of England. We put artists at the centre of our programming, bringing a wide range of practitioners’ work to the public’s attention in cultural and educational settings.

A print of Lady Mary Oldbury as part of the Women in Print exhibition at Dunham Massey

Making visible the invisible

Why Women in Print?

Women in Print was launched in 2016 by Manchester-based designer Jane Bowyer. Jane was frustrated at what she regarded as the lazy stereotyping and side-lining of northern women in books, newspapers, advertising and other forms of printed media.

Jane shares her thoughts: “Every day we see the accomplishments of men making headlines but too often we see women’s achievements reduced to or in the shadow of their biological attributes and capabilities. In my own education, growing up in a working class town in Greater Manchester, I struggled to see myself and my reality reflected back in any of the books or magazines I read. From the history books to national newspapers to advertising campaigns I wasn’t hearing about the achievements and stories of women from the north of England.”

“Growing up in a working class town in Greater Manchester, I struggled to see myself and my reality reflected back in any of the books or magazines I read.”

Jane Bowyer, founder of Women in Print

Shining a light on women’s history and the stories within our places

Projects and Partnerships

Women in Print continues to shine a light on women’s history through self-initiated projects, creative partnerships and commissions. We have collaborated with global and local organisations including Apple, National Trust, Pankhurst Centre, People’s History Museum, Design Manchester and historian Helen Antrobus.  

We’ve delivered exhibitions, artist-led programming and even a book all under the banner that we’re making visible the value of women’s work.

Joanna Houghton working on a piece commissioned by Women in Print on behalf of the National Trust

Making impactful work in support of women

Supporting Local Women

In 2020 we were awarded a Points of Light award by the UK Government for our work in our community. Women in Print has raised money for local charities Manchester Women’s Aid and SmartWorks Greater Manchester through the sale of prints and we’ve supported grassroots campaign The Monthly Gift MCR through donations of sanitary care products at our events.

Manchester Women’s Aid
SmartWorks Greater Manchester
The Monthly Gift MCR

Looking to the Future

Over the last few years we’ve seen communities supporting women flourish across the north of England and we are proud of the role Women in Print has played in the growth and inclusion of women in the design community in Manchester. We want to push our agenda further; we want to see a world that has confidence in feminine creativity and we will continue to do the work needed to achieve this vision in a way that welcomes you to join us.

Mary Quaile by Wendy Wong

Thank you from Women in Print

We also want to say a big thank you to everyone who have supported Women in Print over the years; the artists, the venues and the organisations and individuals who have so kindly given of their time and resources. We want to say a special thanks to:

Big Cartel
G. F Smith Papers
Pressision Printers
Nine Sixty