Amon Carter print details

Woman Standing, Holding a Fan

Mary Cassatt (1844-1926)

Object Details

  • Date


  • Object Type


  • Medium

    Distemper with metallic paint on canvas

  • Dimensions

    50 5/8 x 27 3/4 x 1 1/4 in.

  • Inscriptions


    signed l.l.: Mary Cassatt

  • Credit Line

    Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, Acquisition in honor of Ruth Carter Stevenson and the 50th Anniversary of the Amon Carter Museum of American Art with funds provided by Anne T. and Robert M. Bass, The Walton Family Foundation, Marsland and Richard W. Moncrief, and the Council

  • Accession Number


  • Copyright

    Public domain

Object Description

Cassatt likely executed this work as she prepared for the impressionists’ fourth group show in Paris in 1879. At the time, she and the artist Edgar Degas were experimenting together with distemper, a challenging medium that gives paintings a matte surface finish. Cassatt abandoned distemper after 1879, making this one of only two known paintings that she created with this technique.

Cassatt and Degas were friends, peers, and competitors, and Woman Standing exemplifies how they exchanged ideas, techniques, and motifs. When Degas encouraged his fellow impressionists to make handpainted fans, a popular fashion accessory, Cassatt incorporated fans into her paintings, giving them luster with touches of metallic paint. But she chose not to decorate actual fans. Her decision may have stemmed from the negative connotations of fan making, which, when practiced by women, was treated as an amateur craft rather than a fine art.

—Text taken from the Carter Handbook (2023).

Additional details

Location: On view
See more by Mary S. Cassatt


Educator Resources
  • What things might an artist consider when choosing one medium over another?

    How might the background, clothes, facial expression, and body language depicted in a portrait reveal something about the sitter?

    How might the style and depiction of the subject reveal something about the artist who created the painting?

    How might the style, color palette, and composition affect the mood of a work of art?

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