Senior Curator, Rebecca McGrew and artist Judy Chicago are featured in LA Times, "Q & A: Judy Chicago"

In the great game of word-image association that is art history, when people say Judy Chicago, they picture "The Dinner Party." An installation with dozens of hand-painted table settings dedicated to important women throughout history, the 1970s work elicited impassioned debate, fast becoming a national symbol for feminist art in all of its disruptive power.

But before she painted a single vulval-looking plate and even before she co-founded the groundbreaking Woman's Building in Los Angeles in 1973, Chicago had begun a serious career in L.A., making works that are prime examples of Finish Fetish, Light and Space and earthworks. And she often outdid her male colleagues with her level of training and commitment: She went to auto-body school to learn how to spray paint car hoods, and she went to pyrotechnics classes to learn how to work with fireworks.