What's She Doing Here? Women at Work 1918-2018 is a new exhibition in The Little Museum of Dublin which aims to highlight trailblazing women in Ireland.

This timely exhibition shines a light on historical heroines such as Eileen Gray and Hanna Sheehy-Skeffington to women of today who excel in their industries.

Drop in to get a look at some of Beta Bajgartova's portraits from her book, A Woman’s Work. They include an auto mechanic, an undertaker, a boxer, a pilot, a camerawoman, a chess champion, a bus driver and an 81-year-old rally driver. 

"Every woman I included in this collection is a role model for my two daughters," said Beta.

Rosemary Smith
Rosemary Smith, Rally Driver

In 2017 the only woman in the World Rallying Championship, Louise Cook, had to pull out of the final round because she couldn’t raise the necessary funding. This highly male-dominated sport started in France with city-to-city races in the 1890's.

Notwithstanding a select number of pioneers, the number of women rally drivers working today remains vanishingly small. This makes Irishwoman Rosemary Smith’s achievements all the more impressive: she won the Dutch Tulip Rally outright in 1965 but counts her greatest achievement as the 17,000 London-Mexico City marathon rally in 1970 where her all-female team came in 10th overall.

"I was looked at as a bit of a freak. You know, girls just didn’t drive cars, end of story. Men especially looked down on me. " said Rosemary.

"They sort of thought, 'a little dolly bird – long, blonde hair, very slim, and what was she doing out here anyway?she’d be better sitting on the bonnet of a car dangling her legs down'. But the lads had to change their tune pretty rapidly because I was beating them."

Watch Rosemary's inspiring video above.

Jen Kelly, Industrial Abseiler 
Jen Kelly, Industrial Abseiler

Inside the quirky museum, visitors will find photographs, illustrations, films, audio recordings of some of the country's most memorable women as well as a Post-it poll for visitors to continue the conversation about equality.

Drop in to get a look at some of Beta Bajgartova's portraits from her book, A Woman’s Work. They include an auto mechanic, an undertaker, a boxer, a pilot, a camerawoman, a chess champion, a bus driver and an 81-year-old rally driver. 

"Every woman I included in this collection is a role model for my two daughters," said Beta.

Kathryn Browne,Truck Driver
Kathryn Browne,Truck Driver

Bren Luke also shares illustrations of Mainie Jellett and Mary Robinson from Rocking the System: Fearless and Amazing Irish Women Who Made History, a new book by Siobhán Parkinson.

Nora Khaldi Mathematician and Scientist
Nora Khaldi Mathematician and Scientist

In her preface to the book, Sabina Coyne Higgins writes: "It is easy to take choice and opportunity for granted and to forget the many women who fought, with great determination, to create a more equal world.

"We have much to learn from the women who have rocked, and continue to rock, the system."

Susan McKenna Lawlor, Astrophysicist
Susan McKenna Lawlor, Astrophysicist

In addition to the photographs and illustrations, Bridget Hourican’s work on the historical context adds great richness to the story.

"Opportunity didn’t come about through equality legislation or human rights initiatives but through necessity created by catastrophe," says Bridget.

What’s She Doing Here? is running now and until June 10th, 2018, at The Little Museum of Dublin, 15 St Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2.