Arts Everyday Living: The Brilliance of Pastel–Parisian Night Spot, Cassatt Girl, Handsome Model

Henri Gervex, An Elegant Lady, pastel, n.d., Private Collection


Frenchman Henri Gervex (1852-1929), American Mary Cassatt (1844-1926), and Swiss Jeanne-Etienne Liotard (1702-1789) all understood how pastel could be utilized to attain intensity of color, naturalistic form, and a luminous lighting. Gervex often captured Parisian nightlife while Cassatt and Liotard were brilliant portraitists.


Mary Cassatt, The Black Hat, c. 1890, pastel on tan wove paper, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.


Jean-Etienne Liotard, Portrait of Phillibert Cramer, n.d., pastel on blue paper mounted on canvas, Private Collection

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