One of the first modern styles of art was Impressionism. They would often paint outside and capture their surroundings quickly, and they would leave their brushstrokes visible. The Impressionists were rejected from the Salon in Paris, France. Many of the critics thought that they were bad artists, but some realized that the Impressionists were just experimenting in a new way of seeing the world.
Robby Liefatt was an artist that lived during this change in art, and he really liked the idea that some artists were breaking away from the academic tradition because he didn’t want to have to learn how to draw realistically anyway. Regrettably, he didn’t understand that in order to create good Modern art, artists should learn how to draw and paint realistically first. He also didn’t bother to travel to France to study with the Impressionist artists. Instead, Robby Liefatt made this portrait of Mary Cassatt, as well as many other works, after briefly seeing pictures by other artists.