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Lilla Cabot Perry
Date: American painter, 1848–1933
Biography: Lilla Cabot Perry was an American artist who helped promote impressionism in the United States. Perry was raised in a prominent and progressive Boston family, and she grew up around art and literature. In 1867 she traveled to Europe where she studied painting. After marriage and the birth of four children, Perry returned to painting seriously, studying in Boston with portrait painter Alfred Quinton Collins, Robert Vonnoh, and Dennis Bunker. She moved with her family to Paris in 1887, where she studied at the Académie Colarossi and the Académie Julian. She visited museums and copied paintings in other European cities. Perry befriended leading Impressionists Mary Cassatt, Camille Pissarro, and Claude Monet and began to exhibit her work in France by the late 1880s.

When she returned to Boston in 1890, Perry was at the vanguard of American impressionism and she helped to promote the style through exhibitions of her own work and others in Boston and nationally. She continued to paint impressionist canvasses during a three-year residence in Japan, where her husband was teaching. After 1905 Perry concentrated on portraiture, as she needed commissions to support her family. Between 1889 and 1909 she spent nine summers at Giverny and developed a close friendship with Monet.