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Hartley Artworks

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[Seated Woman with Cat]

ca. 1942-1943
Marsden Hartley, American, (Lewiston, ME, January 4, 1877 - September 2, 1943, Ellsworth, ME)

This and the next drawing (1955.1.13) are studies for two finished paintings, Girl with Kitten, 1943 (Blanton Museum of Art, Texas) and Rest Period, Woman from Maine with Cat, 1942-43 (Chaim Gross Foundation, New York), executed in the last year of Hartley's life. Late in his career Hartley did a total of eight paintings of female figures, perhaps the most famous of which are the mother and daughter archaic portraits of the Nova Scotia family, the Masons. These women are hefty of limb and monumental in scale. By contrast, the later female figures—the series of drawings and paintings of woman and cat are delicate, even wraith-like—as are two others, The Ring and the Book, 1939-40 (Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington DC) and Intellectual Niece, a recent addition to the Hartley Memorial Collection (2016.1.1).

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