Mary Stevenson Cassatt
Born. 22.05.1844 in Pittsburgh
Died. 14.06.1926 in Le Mesnil-Théribus
American artist, lmpressionist
About the artist
Mary Stevenson Cassatt was born on 22 May 1844 in Allegheny City (now part of Pittsburgh), Pennsylvania. After spending her early years in Europe with her parents, the family returned to Pennsylvania and she started her studies at the Fine Arts Academy. Cassat loved painting and at 21 she travelled to Paris to study and take lessons from Jean-Léon Gérôme.
In 1868, ‘The Mandolin Player’ was her first painting to be exhibited at the Paris Salon. Unfortunately, after the outbreak of The Franco-Prussian war, she had to return to Philadelphia in 1870. She returned to Europe a year later and went to Italy to study Italian masters. This was followed by trips to Spain, Belgium, and Holland to study and copy the works of Velázquez, Rubens, and Hals.
Returning to Paris in 1874, her work was shown regularly at the Paris Salon,. Her popularity increased and in 1877 she was invited to join the Impressionists group by Edgar Degas. Cassatt exhibited in four of the exhibitions, in 1879, 1880, 1881, and 1886.
Cassatt’s style changed as she admired the works of Degas and Manet, focusing more on the use of colour and light in her work.
In the late 1870s and early 1880s, her works consisted of family members, the theater, and the opera, eventually moving towards a mother-and-child theme.
At 60 with failing eyesight Cassett stopped painting.
Cassett died on 14 June 1926 at her country home, Château de Beaufresne, at Le Mesnil-Théribus, Oise.