Mary Cassatt at the Louvre: The Paintings Gallery
Hilaire-Germain-Edgar Degas, French, 1834 - 1917
Degas reworked the plate for this etching of Mary Cassatt numerous times, producing more than twenty versions (states) of the image, at times burnishing the metal to lighten or remove elements. Degas’s changes in this, the thirteenth state, are evident where additional aquatint was applied to shade the light and dark bands of the floor, and to modify the marbleized pattern on the doorjamb to the left, an area he altered in nearly every version. Remnants of a wider hat brim are still visible to the left of Cassatt’s head, but were further erased in subsequent states.