BOOKLIST-CassattNovember 2008

Mary Cassatt.

2oo8, 22min. Getting to Know. DVD. $29.95 , Gr.4-6.

American painter Cassatt is profiled in this new entry in the popular Getting to Know the World’s Greatest Artists series. An animated figure representing Cassatt tells how she visited Paris as a youngster and vowed to become an artist despite her father’s opposition. She describes her introduction to impressionism,  a revolutionary movement pioneered by Degas, Van Gogh, Cezanne, and other nineteenth century artists who chose everyday subjects, experimented with color and light, and tried to “capture the moment” in their creations.

Camera pans of Cassatt’s paintings of mothers and children as well as other well·known impressionists illustrate each point. Period photographs and drawings allow the kids to see the real Mary Cassatt. The program ends with a slideshow of significant paintings.

With just the right touch of silliness to hold younger viewers’ interest, this delightful program, along with others in the series, including Andy Warhol(2007), is a perfect vehicle for introducing students to  significant artists. – Candace Smith