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Art to Remind a Mother of the Magic of Childhood

One of the inevitable truths of motherhood is knowing that someday your children will grow up and leave the nest. There is a special kind energy that kids bring into a home and it would be wonderful if we could capture that feeling. Many artists have done their best to reproduce that effect in their art, expressing their own vision of childhood. A painting with the innocence and magic of youth might be the perfect Mother’s Day gift. Here are our Top Ten paintings featuring children.

Pierre-Auguste Renoir – Young Girls at the Piano

Originally a commission for the Musée de Luxembourg, Young Girls at the Piano by Renoir portrays two working-class girls, one playing the piano while her friend observes. With the artist’s expert use of spacing and detail, the viewer sees their unmistakable delight in this innocent moment. The scene depicts a playfulness and youthful intimacy that will be a great addition to your art collection.

Edward Henry Potthast – Children Playing at the Seashore

In Potthast’s Children Playing at the Seashore we see a lighthearted vision of young children guiding a small baby’s first steps in the shallow puddles left by the ocean’s waves. There’s a gentle airiness to the scene, balanced by the two dark figures seated in the background. With his soft wash of colors and dreamy, flowing brushstrokes, you can almost feel the warm, gentle breeze and hear the children’s laughter.

Edgar Degas- Dancers in Pink

There’s something so alluring about ballerinas and Edgar Degas couldn’t stop painting them. In Dancers in Pink, Degas approaches his favorite subject with bold colors and close-up figures. The bright pink hues of their dresses immediately draw the eye, while you can see the influence of Impressionism in the background with a darker, moody tone. It captures the energy held within the room of young ballerinas perfectly.

Gustav Klimt- Le tre eta della donna (Mother and Child)

Klimt was one of the most innovative and controversial artists of the early 20th century and was well known for his slightly erotic images, but here he captures the tender moment between a mother and her child. His use of shapes and colors, that denote his signature Symbolist style, are still evident but this piece offers a more innocent theme than most of his other works.

Winslow Homer – Snap the Whip

Snap the Whip is one of Winslow Homer’s most captivating depictions of kids playing in a dreamlike American setting. Homer is considered one of the most prominent 19th century American artists and as you look at the details in this piece you will understand why. He doesn’t just portray the children at play, but he expresses the unrestrained joy that felt in that moment, so that you can feel that way too.

Mary Cassatt – Breakfast in Bed

Breakfast in Bed features broken brush strokes and rich colors, creating the sense that the image was captured in the moment almost like a snapshot. The subject of a mother and child is a recurring theme in Cassatt’s work, and is part of what has made her paintings so popular over the years. This piece depicts a mother gazing lovingly at her child while the child’s attention is elsewhere, looking out at the world. It creates a warm and familiar feeling for the audience.

Adrian Borda – He Gave Me The Brightest Star

Borda is a popular contemporary artist who often uses bold colors, darkened shadows and provocative imagery in his work. He Gave Me the Brightest Star is part of a series of paintings that the artist created depicting to children on a nighttime adventure and prominently featuring the moon. In this scene he gives us the feeling of wonder so often associated with childhood, but as something we can hold onto.

Theodore Robinson – In a Daisy Field

One of the greatest contributors to the American Impressionism movement, Robinson’s work carries a unique style that combines Impressionism with realism. He often preferred to capture quiet, domestic scenes that involve nature and In a Daisy Field is a perfect example of that. The painting features a young girl carrying an infant through a field of wild daisies, struggling to pick a flower. It offers a calm and sunny feeling to any room.

Berthe Morisot – Little Girls at the Window

Morisot was a leading female impressionist artist alongside Mary Cassatt during the 19th century. Although she chose a wide variety of subjects for her art, her depictions of children, such as Little Girls at the Window, were particularly special. Her impressionist blending technique and use of a soft color palette, created a soothing and innocent scene of the two girls.

Frederick Arthur Bridgman – The Bathing Cove

Bridgman was an American artist whose work used many bright colors. He is also known for incorporating high contrast between darkness and light, and a technique that showed the textures and strokes of his brush. The Bathing Cove is a good example of an almost impressionistic style that creeps into his style. Your eye is drawn to the most detailed parts of the painting, specifically the faces of the mother and child, while the less important parts remain slightly blurred and undefined. The overall impression is one of beauty and warmth.

This is only a sampling of the various pieces we have that include families and children. If these don’t hit the mark, browse through our Family Art gallery and we are sure you will find the perfect piece. Find success this Mother’s Day by giving the gift or beautiful art to someone special.

Amanda Hadley

About the Author

Amanda graduated from the University of Kansas, where she studied English literature and got a masters degree in library sciences. She enjoys reading, cooking and playing with her nephews. Her best friend is her little dog Brady.