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Mary Cassatt
Spanish Dancer Wearing a Lace Mantilla
1873
oil
26 3/4 x 19 3/4 in.
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Victoria Dreyfus



In this informal, introspective portrait, the simplicity of the sitter's pose and the background contrast with the bold, expressive strokes that enliven the embroidered veil. Mary Cassatt traveled to Seville, Spain, in 1872, lured by its picturesque scenery, low cost of living, and the opportunity to study Spanish masters such as Velázquez.