Mary Cassatt - Children Playing On The Beach 1884

Mary Cassatt - Portrait of Alexander J. Cassatt 1883 Mary Cassatt - Susan on a balcony holding a dog 1883-1884 Mary Cassatt - Lady at the Tea Table 1883-1885 Mary Cassatt - Children Playing On The Beach 1884 Mary Cassatt - Portrait of Alexander J. Cassat and His Son Robert Kelso Cassatt 1884 Mary Cassatt - Mr. Robert S. Cassatt on Horseback 1885 Mary Cassatt - The Sisters 1885
Mary Cassatt - Children Playing On The Beach 1884

Children Playing On The Beach 1884
97x74cm oil on canvas
National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.
The image is only being used for informational and educational purposes

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From National Gallery of Art, Washington:
By the time Cassatt exhibited this painting at the eighth and final impressionist exhibition in 1886, her reputation as a painter of mothers and children had been well established. Critics had long commented on her ability to portray her subjects in a tender, yet unsentimental, way: "Oh, my God! those babies! How those portraits have made my flesh crawl, time and again!—A whole passel of English and French smearers has painted them in such stupid, pretentious poses! . . . For the first time, thanks to Mlle. Cassatt, I have seen effigies of enchanting tots, calm and bourgeois scenes, painted with an utterly charming sort of delicate tenderness." Cassatt's focus on a limited range of subjects allowed her to experiment with both the formal elements and painterly qualities of a composition. Her interest in Japanese prints and the process of printmaking can be seen in much of her work after 1883, including Children Playing on the Beach. In this work, Cassatt tightly cropped the scene, tilted the picture plane forward, and reduced the number of objects in the background to draw attention to the two little girls digging in the sand. Absorbed in their activity, they embody the naturalistic attitude prevalent in both art and literature of the time.