|Birth Date: May 22, 1844 |
|Death Date: June 14, 1926
|Born in Allegheny City (now part of Pittsburgh), Pennsylvania, in 1844, to a prominent Pittsburgh businessman, Mary Cassatt began her art studies at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia and later explored Europe before making her home in Paris. She was recognized by the turn of the century as one of the preeminent painters both of her native country and of France, which she made her permanent home in 1875. Cassatt focused her works on a personal and domestic level, specifically geared towards the mother-child relationship. Cassatt’s early paintings were soft and bright in color but later moved to more crisp and bold colors, while she also experimented with, and mastered, print-making.
In 1874, her first year in Paris, one of her paintings was accepted at the Salon exhibit. Three years later, she befriended Degas who had an undeniable effect on her artwork, and eventually, through him, exhibited with the Impressionists. Her ongoing ties with the Impressionist painters in Europe moved her to support bringing Impressionist painting across the ocean via her brother Alexander, who came to own works by Degas, Monet, Renoir, and Pissarro.