|Paper Size (W x H)||40 x 30 ins|
‘Danseuses’ is a masterful example of Degas' dance imagery. No subject attracted Degas more profoundly than the ballet. It has been estimated that he made approximately 1500 drawings, paintings, and sculptures of dancers, more than half of his total output. Degas' body of dance imagery encompasses a seemingly limitless vocabulary of poses, representing a relentless exploration of the figure in motion
The painting depicts ballerinas standing on both sides of a stage. Degas has used a reduced depth of the pictorial space, has lowered his point of view to be closer to normal, and focuses on a group of figures. The group of beautiful ballerinas all have dark hair, are dressed in the same costume and are of similar height so they have no distinguishable features. The scene is predominately dark green and grey but the bright pink dresses allow a sudden burst of colour.
Degas had an incredible ability to take a subject that seemed intensely, even scandalously, modern at the time and to instill it with timelessness. The make-believe realm of the theatre provided the perfect forum for such material, as many of the clues as to the era have been deliberately removed. This means that the scene in ‘Danseuses’, while strikingly modern to the French nineteenth-century audience, could plausibly have shown dancers from decades earlier, or even a century later.
The print is hand numbered and accompanied by a certificate signed by the Master Printer and bearing a matching number to the print.
About the Artist
His early works, family portraits and some history pictures, belied his later oeuvre. By the late 1860s, he had begun to develop a more casual style of painting, probably influenced by Manet and also by Whistler. He was a member of the group that included Renoir, Cezanne, Monet, Sisley, and Pissarro.Find out more