Mother and Child (1889) by Mary Cassatt

Mother and Child - Mary Cassatt - c.1889

Artwork Information

TitleMother and Child
ArtistMary Cassatt
Datec.1889
Mediumwatercolor
Dimensions90 x 64.5 cm
Art MovementImpressionism
Current LocationPrivate Collection

About Mother and Child

The artwork titled “Mother and Child” was created by renowned artist Mary Cassatt around 1889. It is executed in watercolor, a medium in which Cassatt has demonstrated considerable expertise, capturing the delicate nuances of her subjects. As part of the Impressionist movement, Cassatt’s work reflects the characteristics of the time, focusing on light, movement, and the candid moments of everyday life. This piece, which falls under the genre of sketch and study, measures 90 x 64.5 cm and is presently part of a private collection.

In “Mother and Child,” Mary Cassatt portrayed an intimate moment between a mother and her young child. The mother, seen in profile, gently cradles the child, whose face is turned outward, looking directly at the viewer with an expression of innocent curiosity. The looseness of the watercolor application is characteristic of Impressionism, achieving an effect that is both immediate and ephemeral. The predominant use of blue tones to depict the mother’s attire adds a rich vibrancy to the artwork, while the lighter hues used to render the figures’ flesh create a soft and tender contrast. The mother’s embrace is protective and nurturing, conveying a universal theme of maternal care and affection. Cassatt’s signature at the bottom right adds a personal touch to the piece. This sketch is reflective of Cassatt’s persistent exploration of the bond between mothers and children, a central theme in her oeuvre.

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