Maternal Caress

Mary Cassatt American

Not on view

Cassatt used this drawing to prepare the color print known by the same title. The verso of the sheet bears faint lines of soft-ground that adhered to it in the process of tracing the design to transfer it to the copperplate. The drawing reveals the artist changing her mind, adjusting the contours and position of the mother’s head and arms and the baby’s right foot. The resemblance of the sitters to those in an oil sketch titled "Mme de Fleury and Her Child" (private collection) suggests that this composition may portray one of Cassatt’s friends, as opposed to a professional model with whom she often worked.

Maternal Caress, Mary Cassatt (American, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 1844–1926 Le Mesnil-Théribus, Oise), Compressed charcoal and graphite over some charcoal lines

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