Mary Cassatt painted Woman Standing, Holding a Fan in 1878-79. The painting showcases an exercise in pattern and design with the woman’s dress forming the inverted shape of the fan she is holding. Cassatt’s interest in Japonisme, encouraged by Edgar Degas and Camille Pissarro, is evident as Woman Standing, Holding a Fan exhibits themes inspired by Japanese and European art.
Cassatt was influenced by her mother’s belief in educating women, which echoed through her works. She often depicted the social and private lives of women in her paintings. Despite being one of few female artists associated with Impressionism her influence on other artists remained limited due to the waning critical taste for Impressionism after her death.
Today, Woman Standing, Holding a Fan remains celebrated as one of Cassatt’s most famous paintingsof all time. It is part of Cassatt’s legacy albeit being kept within a private collection to date. Mary Cassatt continues to be remembered for paving the way for female artists who have followed in her footsteps; celebrating femininity both artistically and thematically through their works.