Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013
May 1, 2013

Destitute Dead Mother holding her sleeping Child in Winter

Destitute Dead Mother holding her sleeping Child in Winter

c. 1850

Octave Tassaert

(French, 1800–1874)

Oil on canvas

Framed: 33 x 25 cm (13 x 9 13/16 in.)

Gift in memory of Helen Borowitz 2013.257


Did you know?

Greatly admired by writers and social activists, Octave Tassaert provided illustrations for books by such celebrated authors as Alexandre Dumas père and Victor Hugo.


One of France's leading artists of the mid-19th century, Octave Tassaert was known for his paintings of downtrodden workers, destitute mothers, suicides, and abandoned children. Viewers responded positively to his focus on issues of social injustice, as seen in this painting of a poor mother resting outdoors in the show with her baby. She is leaning against a pile of sticks, a common activity among the poor of gathering and selling small pieces for wood for burning in fireplaces or stoves.

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