Looking Into The Hand Mirror (No. 2)

Mary Cassatt

American, 1844 - 1926

Looking into the Hand Mirror (No. 2), ca. 1905

  • Not On View

Etching on paper

Dimensions: 9 3/8 × 7 3/8 in. (23.8 × 18.7 cm)

Gift of Michael and Natalie Pelavin, 1997.100

Mary Cassatt, an American expatriate living in Paris, was both a painter and printmaker and has the notable distinction of being the only American to be invited to participate in the 1874 Impressionist exhibition. In April 1890, an exhibition of Japanese woodcuts at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts inspired Cassatt to begin experimenting with different print techniques. The theme of mothers and children pervades much of Cassatt’s work. Although she herself never married, she often spent time with friends and family and their children. She did not idealize the children, but showed their chubby bodies and awkward poses as they would have been seen. By showing such intimate scenes, Cassatt opens a window on women and children’s private lives in the 19th century.

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