1848 – 1907
Industrial Revolution II

Cassatt's Breakfast in Bed


Mary Cassatt, Breakfast In Bed, 1897, oil on canvas, 25 5/8 x 29 in. (65 x 73.6 cm)
(Huntington Library, San Marino, California)

Speakers: Dr. Steven Zucker, Dr. Beth Harris

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Previous Comments

jeana wrote on Friday, July 08, 2011

I didn't find the mother's embrace to be restraining. Clearly, as the speakers said, she is lost in her own thoughts but, it seemed to me, that the gravity of whatever consumes her attention is what creates an embrace of grounding, reality or safety. It almost seems like the mother doesn't even really notice the child.

Dana wrote on Saturday, November 03, 2012

It looks to me like Cassatt captured a moment between child and mother that could have been an everyday routine. I imagined, the child coming in to have breakfast with mom, while mom is lost in thought and preparing the list of things to do that day. I have found myself embracing my own children that way. My son or daughter needing a cuddle, and I lost in thought. My focus was really drawn to their faces with their rosy cheeks. It seems like such a simple, innocent moment.

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Where and When

Cassatt, Breakfast in Bed
American working in Paris, France
1897

Check this out as well

Cassatt at the Huntington

This video on YouTube

This work is an open educational resource and This work is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 license.