Mary Cassatt (World of Art)

Overview

This radically new study redefines the American artist Mary Cassatt's status in the Parisian avant-garde and in American art-- placing her work in the wider context of nineteenth-century feminism and art theory. Cassatt's art explores a New Woman's perspective on the spaces of modernity: at the theatre, in the drawing-room and garden, in the studio. Admired by Degas-- who invited her to show with the Impressionists in 1877-- Cassatt's work reveals her profound study of Old Masters and keen responses to ...

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Overview

This radically new study redefines the American artist Mary Cassatt's status in the Parisian avant-garde and in American art-- placing her work in the wider context of nineteenth-century feminism and art theory. Cassatt's art explores a New Woman's perspective on the spaces of modernity: at the theatre, in the drawing-room and garden, in the studio. Admired by Degas-- who invited her to show with the Impressionists in 1877-- Cassatt's work reveals her profound study of Old Masters and keen responses to contemporary French and Spanish painters. Griselda Pollock puts a new emphasis on Cassatt's interest in Manet and her influence on American collections of French modernism. She also argues that Cassatt's experimentation with etching and pastel from the late 1880s enabled her to represent women and children without sentimentality but with a deepening awareness of a complex psychological charge. 184 illus., 55 in color.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
With a major traveling exhibition of Mary Cassatt's work making the rounds of U.S. museums, it's the right time to rethink the most famous American Impressionist. Cassatt's paintings, many of which depict women and children in natural settings, have, in the past, been marginalized because of their subject matter. This new study approaches the work from a new angle, one that shows Cassatt's awareness of the growing importance of the psychological bond between people.
Library Journal
Modern study of Mary Cassatt has been largely, although not entirely, based upon the faultless work of Adelyn Breeskin, Frederick Sweet, and Nancy Mowll Mathews. Now the eight contributors to this huge volume have added truly monumental data on the life and work of Cassatt and to Impressionist art history in general. Six independent essays reveal new aspects of the artist's work and personality. The standout essay is Judith Barter's "Mary Cassatt: Themes, Sources and the Modern Woman." Others cover Cassatt's early realist style, her relationship to Degas, her American exhibitions, and Cassatt's impact upon the formation of art collections in the United States. In addition, there are 300 illustrations, including 124 excellent color plates, and a 25-page illustrated chronology with maps. Essential. British feminist art historian Pollock (Mary Cassatt, LJ 2/15/81) here offers her second book on Cassatt. Part of the respected British "World of Art" paperback series, the book is compact, well illustrated (184 images, 55 in color), and inexpensive. Technical art history terms explained for the introductory reader confirm this as intended for the general public and large libraries. As the back cover makes plain, it is also meant to be a radically new study redefining Cassatt in "the Parisian avant-garde and in American art." But the discussion too often descends to the polemical and cannot be depended upon for factual accuracy; there are sources but no traditional footnotes. The undercurrent of distaste for Cassatt's country of birth and family origins is unnecessary. An optional purchase.--Mary Hamel-Schwulst, Towson Univ., MD
Booknews
A lucid study of many facets of American artist Cassatt and her work--redefining her status in the Parisian avant-garde and in American art, and placing her work in the context of 19th-century feminism and art theory. Pollock (social and critical histories, U. of Leeds) is internationally known as a feminist art historian and cultural theorist. This compact book (6x8.25") is well written, well designed, and a good value. It includes both color and b&w reproductions. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780500203170
  • Publisher: Thames & Hudson
  • Publication date: 9/28/1998
  • Series: World of Art Series
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 779,847
  • Product dimensions: 5.87 (w) x 8.21 (h) x 0.58 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface 7
Chronology 10
Introduction: Who is Mary Cassatt? What is She? 12
Ch. 1 Mary Cassatt: Painter of "Modern Woman," 1893 34
Ch. 2 Americans At Home and Abroad 68
Ch. 3 Cassatt's Choices 1870-77 90
Ch. 4 Modern Woman - Modern Spaces 1877-91 120
Ch. 5 The Maid and the Mother in the Color Prints of 1891 156
Ch. 6 The Child of Modernity 1885-1915 184
Epilogue 214
Select Bibliography and Sources 218
List of Illustrations 219
Index 223
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