Tea in Art – focus on Mary Cassatt

20 06 2010

Tea has always been an important part of daily lives and therefore also became an important theme often portrayed by artists and painter in their works. Tea is a reoccurring theme in the paintings of American impressionist Mary Cassatt (1844 – 1926). She focused a lot on the private and social lives of women in late 19th and early 20th century. Additionally a large part of her work also shows the bond between mothers and children. Cassatt was the only American woman invited to exhibit along with other great independent Impressionists.

Mary Cassatt “Five O’clock Tea” – painted in France in 1880, oil on canvas, the painting can be seen in the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston

Mary Cassatt “The Cup of Tea II” –  1879, the painting portrays the painter’s sister Lydia Simpson

Mary Cassatt “Lady at the Tea Table” –  1883, oil on canvas, the painting can be seen in the Metropolitan Museum in New York

Mary Cassatt “The Cup of Tea I” – 1897, pastel on tan wove paper

Mary Cassatt “Afternoon Tea Party” – 1891, drypoint, aquatint, and gold paint on laid paper, part of a 10 print series that explores the domestic activities and roles of women in the 19th century

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