My Feminist connection is to my Grandmother Esther Cepuran. In my painting, she is the woman confidently looking straight ahead. Caring for those around you and encouraging one to be true to themselves to me is one of the greatest attributes of character. I believe this is what Feminism embodies, and this is what my grandmother did for her children and people around her. While my grandmother was not a vocal Feminist, she did call her sisters for feminist advice and lived a life that modeled feminism by empowering and nurturing others. While I never got to meet my grandmother, her legacy lives on through stories passed down of her strength and big heart. As I listen and seek stories of my grandmother, I find myself connecting and striving for her character. Being an arts educator, I am very passionate about students using their own voice in their work, just as my grandmother encouraged her children. She was not confined by what society decided what genders could and could not do. She defied the family catholic tradition of sending her oldest son to be a priest and encouraged him to pursue his interests and to attend cooking school. While she cared for her own, she was always helping those in need.
This painting is inspired from an old photograph that I have always felt connected too. I also wanted to paint this image because I could feel the love in my uncle's eyes when he saw that photograph of her.
Josephine Langbehn is a Nebraska artist engaged in multiple disciplines. She is a visual artist, arts educator and swing dance enthusiast. Josephine's paintings have been exhibited in regional exhibitions across the state of Nebraska and in the Midwest including; Salina Biennial, National Art Education Association Juried Exhibition, Nebraska Artist Biennial, and Bemis Center for Contemporary Art Auction. She holds a BA in art education and an MA in Secondary Education from the University of Nebraska at Omaha. For ten years Josephine taught at the middle level for Omaha Public Schools, and is currently in her third-year teaching K-5 elementary art for Gretna Public Schools. In 2015 she was selected as the Nebraska Outstanding Art Educator of the Year by the Nebraska Art Teachers Association and is currently serving co-past president for the Nebraska Art Teachers Association. Langbehn also has been studying, practicing, performing and teaching historic jazz dance for 20 years. She has had the opportunity to learn vernacular jazz dance from originals and champion instructors by traveling around the country to pursue her love of swing dancing. Josephine currently resides in Omaha, Nebraska where she teaches both private and group lessons in both the visual arts and swing dance while also exhibiting her artwork.
Social Media Handles:
Facebook: Josephine Langbehn