Designing Women

This course will explore the lives of six women from different continents, living in the late 19th to 20th centuries. The common thread linking these women is that they all possessed creative talents in their respective fields of art and design. We will trace their lives, assessing their achievements and recognition: Gertrude Jekyll, artist/craftswoman/garden designer (England); Ellis Rowan, flower painter (Australia); Beatrix Potter, artist/illustrator (England); Marion Mahony, architect (USA); Vita Sackville-West, garden artist (England); and Edna Walling, landscape designer (Australia).

Independent Study Discussion Courses are for study by groups without a tutor, so there is no need to write reports. These courses were written by tutors who have now since retired from the Discussion Group Program. Some courses were written a number of years ago, and therefore contain references to events which are now more historical than current, however, all are entertaining, well-produced and worthwhile.


Course Author: David Millar

Course Code: D118

Supplied Material: Course Booklet

Units & Pricing: 6 units / $48 per person


Start your Group: Anyone can start a Discussion Group – seek out some like-minded friends or put up a notice in your local library, bookshop or workplace. Please note a minimum of 6 people is required to start a new discussion group.

Arrange the Meetings: New groups need to decide where and when to meet, and for how long – whatever best suits members' particular situations.

Run your Group: Choose a secretary to liaise with WEA and your tutor, a Discussion Leader to chair meetings, a reporter to take discussion notes to send to your tutor, and maybe a librarian to look after the books.

Start the Course: Contact WEA Sydney to enrol. Bookings can be made for one year, divided into two terms – Term 1 commences in February, Term 2 in July (Groups may make forward bookings for popular choices). Please indicate in what order your Group wishes to study the courses, if more than one course is booked.