Dancer with Tambourine (c.1882) by Edgar Degas

Dancer with Tambourine - Edgar Degas - c.1882

Artwork Information

TitleDancer with Tambourine
ArtistEdgar Degas
Art MovementImpressionism
Current LocationPrivate Collection

About Dancer with Tambourine

The artwork “Dancer with Tambourine” is a pastel on paper created by the esteemed artist Edgar Degas around the year 1882. This piece is a genre painting rendered in the Impressionist style and presently resides within a private collection. As with many of Degas’ works, it embodies the dynamic grace of its subject matter and captures the fleeting beauty of motion.

In this particular artwork, a poised dancer is depicted in a spirited pose with a tambourine held high above her head. Her face is alight with concentration, conveying both the exertion and the joy of her performance. The dancer is dressed in a traditional ballet outfit with a white tutu and a black bodice, featuring exquisite details that imply movement and texture. Her legs and ballet shoes are shown in a balletic fourth position, one of the classical dance poses that illustrates Degas’ deep familiarity with the world of dance.

The palette of the pastel is characterized by warm hues dominating the background, creating a harmonious contrast with the white and black of the dancer’s attire. The use of color and light reflects the Impressionist aim of capturing a moment as it is perceived, emphasizing the interplay between the figure and the ambient space. The execution of the medium allows for a sense of immediacy and spontaneity, which aligns with the fleeting nature of the dancer’s movement. Degas’ adept use of pastels renders a soft yet vibrant texture to the artwork, which is emblematic of his artistic mastery and his dedication to exploring the nuances of human form and movements within the performing arts.

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