"The year of the woman" became a headline in 1992 when the Senate welcomed a record-breaking number of women. Whether 2020 will be the year the U.S. elects its first female president remains to be seen, but the art world will set its own record next year when 50 museums mount all-women art shows.

Look what Trump's presidency has wrought

The idea for the all-women museum shows came from Apsara diQuinzio, senior curator of modern and contemporary art at the Berkely Art Museum, who told the Art Newspaper that after the Women's March in 2017 and the election of Donald Trump, she felt "this urgent need to do something.” One of the "something" is the upcoming exhibit called Witch Hunt, which will feature feminist artists at the Hammer Museum and the Institute of Contemporary Art in L.A.

- all of whom exhibit organizer Connie Butler called "bad-ass mid-career artist."

The usual suspects plus a host of others

Speaking of "bad-ass" artists, Judy Chicago will show at the de Young Museum in San Francisco next spring. And DiQuinzio,’ who also is an artist, will show her own work where she works - the Berkeley Art Museum. The exhibit will present some 70 artists' 100-plus works. “it is the biggest show I’ve ever done,” DiQuinzio said. Exhibit examples will be grouped by themes such as " the idea of hysteria, and feminist utopias." I don't know about you, but I think this all-woman exhibit idea is a bad one. (More about that in a moment).

London's National Portrait Gallery joins the fray

The 50-museum extravaganza of feminist art won't be one of a kind. An exhibit titled "Pre-Raphaelite sisters" - a kind of counter punch to the famed 'Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood - is now on view at London's National Portrait Gallery. The Atlantic magazine report of the show ran under the headline, "New Exhibition Shows Women as Artists, Not Muses," which makes clear that the show is not the usual museum fare of art picturing women as models rather than as makers of their own art.

According to the Atlantic, this display "moves female creatives from the margins of a historical era and puts them at the center." But does it?

Women fighting history with a history of their own

The "Pre-Raphaelite Sisters" exhibit is an effort to counter a museum's habit of showing art by men about women. As art historian Edwin Mullins pointed out in his book "The Painted Witch," all-male art shows allow only views of the female through the male eye.

Granted, the female artist's complaint about being ignored is uncontestable. But here's the thing. In the attempt to put a stop to the divide by mounting all-female art shows, feed the divide. The better goal would be to rally for inclusion in all the male-only exhibits so women can stake their claim in art history.