We all have a mother, whether she was known or not and our relationship to our mother is complicated. Yet the love of a mother is fierce, protective, even when that love is not perfect.
There are hundreds of thousands of great photos and paintings which manage to capture the strength and/or the vulnerability of mothers in their art.
This next set of historical paintings is unusual because rather than idealize motherhood, these male artists understood the strain, the mess and the humour involved in mothering a large brood.
American Mary Cassatt was one of the leading artists in the Impressionist movement of the later part of the 1800s. She painted hundreds of mothers with children which radiate with the devotion and love between mother and child.