Mary Cassatt was born in Allegheny City (currently Pittsburgh), Pennsylvaniaand early 20thcenturies.

During her early childhood, her fathermoved her to Europe to continue his profession as a banker and she spent themajority of her life in Paris. When she was seventeen (1861), she returned toPennsylvania to be privately taught in Philadelphia and at the PennsylvaniaAcademy of Fine Arts, but decided she wanted a more hands-on experience. Back inEurope, she was taught by many different artists, such as Jean-Léon Gérôme andThomas Couture.

Mary Cassatt is known for her Impressionist art that used vividcolors and she also enjoyed experimenting. She used many different mediumsthroughout her career, including pastels, watercolors, and even prints, though she ismost well-known for her paintings. Most of her art was based off of children andmothers; however, she never had a family of her own. Mary Cassatt died at the ageof 82 after producing a large amount of works that were popular during her life andstill remain so today.

What drew me to Mary Cassatt was a description of her painting “In theLoge.” Instead of the reoccurring focus in paintings from that time period being on abeautiful woman not paying attention to the opera, Cassatt’s figure is very intent onthe show. Though this woman is not on display, a man still watches her from thetop, his binoculars pointed straight at her. This would definitely have to be myfavorite Mary Cassatt painting as it manages to simply show the world in a femalepoint-of-view as a woman of average beauty avoids unwanted attention, instead ofa image of perfection to be gazed upon by all. One of the most important lessons Ilearned from Mary Cassatt is to not be afraid to take a different approach or show adifferent side. No doubt some frowned upon her new interpretation, but by standingout, she entered into the group of artists that can stand the test of time and remainpopular through the ages.


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