MARY CASSATT, ‘Mother’s Kiss’, 1890-1891. Drypoint and aquatint on laid paper.
Color print, 9×13.75 inches (with no body).
Two figures, a mom and baby, dominate the vertical area. A female in a relaxed, homely gown with a white collar and cuffs, the costume adorned with straightforward flower motifs, is seated on what seems to be a higher-backed picket chair, painted also with flower motifs. She has her hair preset up in a bun style. The boy or girl is nude with a excellent crop of hair. The girl cradles and embraces and leans down to kiss the youngster. The supported kid retains the collar of the mother’s dress, the other arm is unseen. The track record is plain and devoid of any further info.
The image is linear in fashion, evocative of and hugely influenced by Japanese prints with flat plains of colour and motifs. We see, normally a absence of all-natural variety or shadows, usual of Japanese art. As we can see, the motifs do not follow type and are flat. The strongest color is from the deep environmentally friendly and purple of the chair with the colors being picked up by the dim inexperienced and pink flower motifs of the costume. The darkest color is the black hair of mother and youngster. These darkish colours distinction with the light-weight pale green of the dress and the pale powdery blue of the track record. A large component of the graphic is the basic light-weight blue color occupying the major third of the graphic and down the appropriate-hand side. This big flat pale place tends to make the matter matter stand out and focuses the topic.
The intimacy, tenderness and close bond of appreciate concerning mom and baby are moving and coronary heart-warming, a exclusive bond but it is not the otherworldliness of religious spiritual devotion that we uncover in Renascence artwork but a lovely domestic scene of actuality. The strains and flower motifs on the costume skip and dance give a lively dynamic to the image which contrasts with the stillness of the personal second and flat track record.