Reine and Margot Seated on a Sofa (No. 1),
Every time I go to an art museum with my mom, she asks me the same question, "do you think they have a Cassatt?" For my mom, Mary Cassatt is the "it" artist, and here we see the familiar, tender subject matter that has made Mary Cassatt one of the best known Impressionist artists. While Cassatt painted a multitude of other subjects in her career, her images of mothers and their children remain beloved glimpses into late nineteenth century domestic life. What could the little girl have said to her mother at this moment? Was it a youthful observation? When will you read me a story? A quiet "I love you"? We can imagine this little girl wiggling off of her mother’s lap to play with a smile on both their faces as they go about their day in the Paris of 1902.
Ye Shall Inherit the Earth, 1953
Charcoal on paper
Here we have two mothers in two different times and places each wanting their children to grow up happy and healthy and strong. I think about my mother this week who like the Cassatt mother indulged a wiggling little girl and like White’s mother boosted me to achieve all that I could, and I say thank you and happy mother’s day today and everyday. In honor of mothers everywhere who bandaged scraped knees or soothed disappointments after junior high dances, happy mother’s day.
Call your mother… and bring her to the Blanton!