Experience the Colby College Museum of Art’s latest exhibition, Inside Out: The Prints of Mary Cassatt. Drawn primarily from The Lunder Collection, the show highlights Cassatt’s creative process and her fearless experimentation. Born into an upper-class family in Pennsylvania, she trained as an artist at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts and then undertook further studies in Europe. She settled in Paris in 1874, and soon her parents and sister joined her there. Prevailing norms of the time limited Cassatt, a woman artist, with regard to the subject matter she could depict and the social spaces she could frequent. As an Impressionist printmaker, she focused on the domestic lives, social rituals, and leisure activities of women in nineteenth-century Paris.
The experimental nature of these prints, combined with an attention on modern urban women, made these works quite unusual in their time. Yet, today, those very qualities of domesticity, intimacy, and privacy could be seen as reinforcing stereotypes of women. This exhibition invites viewers to reflect on how we each experience family, caregiving, and identity in our own lives, and to explore Cassatt’s extraordinary capacity to evoke mood, feeling, and setting.
The Colby Museum is free and open to all, Tuesday–Sunday. Plan your visit today.