Simone in a Blue Bonnet
Simone in a Blue Bonnet, ca. 1903
Oil on canvas
61 x 52.1 cm (24 x 20 1/2 inches)
Gift of Mrs. Murray S. Danforth 60.095
Mary Cassatt was one of the most advanced painters of her generation and the only American artist to participate in the Impressionist exhibitions of the 1870s and 80s. Her models were often members of her household, whether in Paris or at her country home at Chateau de Beaufresne in the nearby Oise region. Between 1903 and 1904, she made numerous pictures of a little girl named Simone, posing her in large, colorful bonnets decorated with ribbons and feathers. In this portrait, Cassatt skillfully renders the child’s face, then brushes in her hair and costume with thick strokes of paint. Her technique is revealed in the unfinished state of the painting. Although she partially sketched a dark background to project the figure forward, she elsewhere let the natural brightness of the bare canvas impart an overall light tonality.(October 11, 2013 – February 9, 2014)
After moving to Paris to acquire advanced artistic training, Cassatt became the only American to participate in the groundbreaking French Impressionist exhibitions of the 1870s and 1880s. Her female models were often members of her Paris household or neighbors from her nearby country home.
Cassatt made numerous studies of a little girl named Simone, frequently posing her in colorful bonnets. In this unfinished portrait, she skillfully models the child’s face then sketches her hair and costume with thick strokes of paint. She projects the figure forward from a dark background, but otherwise preserves the natural brightness of the canvas, an Impressionist technique that assured a light overall tonality.(April 6, 2007 – January 6, 2008)
Edited ByWoolsey, Ann, ed.
Publisher & DateMuseum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design, 2008
TypeMonographs and CollectionsSelection VIIAmerican Painting from the Museum's Collection, c.1800-1930
Contributions byMandel, Patrica C.F.
Publisher & DateMuseum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design, 1977
TypeMonographs and CollectionsA Handbook of the Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design
Edited ByWoodward, Carla M., and Franklin W. Robinson, eds.
Publisher & DateMuseum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design, 1988
TypeMonographs and CollectionsExchange Exhibition, Exhibition ExchangeFrom the Collection of Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University; From the Collection of The Museum of Art, Rhode
Contributions byMuseum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design.
Publisher & DateMuseum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design. Waltham, MA: Rose Art Museum, Brandesi University., 1967
Mathews, Nancy Mowll. “Mary Cassatt: Friends and Family”. Shelburne. Shelburne Museum, 2008.