Monday, April 9, 2018

Women / Impressionism 3

Everybody knows Mary Cassatt as the painter of adorable babies, but that was not her only skill.  The exhibit "Women Artists in the Age of Impressionism" includes lots of her work.

Yes, there were adorable babies.  You probably know the first one, but maybe not the second:

Children Playing on the Beach, 1884

Spring: Margot Standing in a Garden, 1900

Can you imagine putting that hat on a little girl to go out and play?  Obviously Margot wasn't encouraged to climb trees or turn somersaults.

Here are some adults:

The Reader, 1877

Although Cassatt's signature style is highly realistic, I was intrigued by two paintings that were much more gauzy.

Woman Standing, Holding a Fan, 1878-9

The focus here is on the dress rather than its wearer; in particular, the foofy lace on the left sleeve is almost luminous with back lighting.  I'd much rather have this painting in my living room than the one of the reader.

Autumn, Portrait of Lydia Cassatt, 1880

This portrait of the artist's sister is like two arts in one -- the face realistic, the patterned blanket almost abstract.  In fact, the loose brushwork of the blanket reminded me of Gerhard Richter's squeegee paintings!

Gerhard Richter, Abstraktes Bild, 1991

The show continues through May 13 at the Speed Museum in Louisville.

1 comment:

  1. Margot appears to me to be very proud of her hat. My grandmother, b. 1888 so older than Margot, certainly climbed trees in clothes very like the dress and smock she's wearing, and rode a horse bareback to the store.
    Mary Anne in Kentucky