Adventures in Art History Adventures in Art    

Lesson 14: A Woman and a Girl Driving

by Mary Cassatt


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    Adventures in Art History Adventures in Art    

Lesson 14: A Woman and a Girl Driving

by Mary Cassatt

Directions

Study the painting for one week.

Over the week:

  • Look at the painting.
  • Read the synopsis.
  • Study the vocabulary words.
  • Read about the artist.
  • Practice reciting the names of the artist and the painting.
  • Complete the enrichment activities.
  • Study the review questions.

Synopsis

In Mary Cassatt's 'A Woman and a Girl Driving,' a woman, a child, and a man ride in a horse-drawn carriage. The woman drives and rides in front with the child. The man rides in the back, his face only visible in profile. All three people wear serious expressions. This painting reflects the theme of 'women in control' seen in many of Cassatt's works.

Vocabulary

Impressionist: An art style featuring thin, visible brush strokes of color.
Driving: The control and operation of a motor vehicle.
Profile: An outline of something, especially a person's face, as seen from one side.
Passenger: A traveler in a carriage or vehicle other than the driver.
Horse-drawn: Pulled by a horse.
Carriage: A wheeled vehicle for carrying people and items.

Concepts

Mary Cassatt painted 'A Woman and a Girl Driving.'

  1. Mary Cassatt was born in 1844 in Pennsylvania. See her self-portrait below.
  2. Find Cassatt's state of birth (PA) on the map of the continental United States below.
  3. As an adult, Mary Cassatt spent much of her time in France. Find France on the map of Europe below.
  4. Cassatt captured moments in the lives of ordinary women and children, often featuring the bond between mother and child.
  5. She painted in a style called 'Impressionism.' Impressionism originated in France in the 19th century.
  6. Rather than rendering detailed, precise images, impressionists used visible brush strokes of different colors to create a gauzy 'impression' of scenes from everyday life.
  7. Cassatt died in 1926 at the age of 82 in Paris, France.

Enrichment

Activity 1: Can You Find It?

During the week, study the painting and find the following:

  • Woman
  • Little Girl
  • Man
  • Horse
  • Black Top Hat
  • Carriage
  • Wheel
  • Whip

Activity 2: Narrate the Painting

  • After studying the painting, narrate the scene shown in the painting aloud using your own words.

Activity 3: Complete Vocabulary Activities

  • While studying the vocabulary words, point them out in the painting.
  • Define each of the vocabulary words in your own words.

Activity 4: Color the Painting   

  • Click the crayon above, and complete page 20 of 'Kindergarten Art History Coloring Book.'

Review

Question 1

Who are the characters in the painting?
1 / 4

Answer 1

The woman driving, the child, and the man in the back.
1 / 4

Question 2

What is the setting of the painting?
2 / 4

Answer 2

Outside, going down a road in a horse-drawn carriage.
2 / 4

Question 3

What are the people riding in?
3 / 4

Answer 3

A horse-drawn carriage.
3 / 4

Question 4

Who is driving the carriage?
4 / 4

Answer 4

The woman.
4 / 4

  1. Who are the characters in the painting? The woman driving, the child, and the man in the back.
  2. What is the setting of the painting? Outside, going down a road in a horse-drawn carriage.
  3. What are the people riding in? A horse-drawn carriage.
  4. Who is driving the carriage? The woman.

References

  1. 'Mary Cassatt.' Wikipedia. Wikipedia.org. n.p.