"She was a great draftsman. She was a great colorist. Her work is just phenomenal," Harrison says, describing an impressive array of more than 20 drawings and paintings assembled for the exhibit.

"But after her early death from cancer in 1913, her work has been waiting to be rediscovered."

Not until the 1920s, '30s and '40s, Harrison says, did the art world broaden enough to enable women to pursue the same kinds of possibilities and subjects as men.

And when that happened, their impact on the studios, schools, galleries and museums of Europe and America exploded.

Among the photographers included here are such figures as Dorothea Lange, Berenice Abbott and Margaret Bourke-White, whose images rank neck and neck with those produced by the best male photographers of the modern era.

Ditto for such celebrated sculptors and painters as Louise Nevelson, Doris Caesar and Helen Frankenthaler.

"Isn't this fabulous!" Harrison says, admiring the passionate exaggeration of human form found in Caesar's masterful 1953 bronze "Female Torso."

"There's a thread here that runs all the way back to our earlier sculptures by Anna Hyatt Huntington. But this is just so avant garde."

News to use

What: "Women of the Chrysler: A 400-Year Celebration of the Arts"

Where: Chrysler Museum of Art, Olney Road and Mowbray Arch, Norfolk

When: Wednesday-Sunday through July 28

Cost: Free

Info: 664-6200 www.chrysler.org