Dancers (c.1897 – c.1901) by Edgar Degas

Dancers - Edgar Degas - c.1897 - c.1901

Artwork Information

ArtistEdgar Degas
Datec.1897 - c.1901
Art MovementImpressionism
Current LocationPrivate Collection

About Dancers

The artwork “Dancers” by Edgar Degas, created around 1897 to 1901, is a pastel genre painting aligned with the Impressionist movement. Currently held in a private collection, this piece exemplifies Degas’ fascination with the world of dance, particularly ballet, which is a recurring theme in his body of work.

In the image, you can observe several ballerinas in various states of movement and repose. The dancers are depicted wearing voluminous tutus, with strokes of pastel creating a soft yet vibrant texture, suggesting the frills and folds of their garments. Their postures range from a dancer adjusting her shoe on the right, conveying a sense of relaxation and fatigue, to another with her back turned towards the viewer in the center, raising her arm gracefully, perhaps in the midst of a dance routine or warm-up exercise. The use of light and shadow, along with the dreamy, somewhat undefined background, imbues the painting with a sense of immediacy and spontaneity, which are hallmarks of Impressionism. The sketchy, almost ethereal quality of the figures is typical of Degas’ late work, capturing the ephemeral moments backstage, away from the audience’s gaze, where dancers prepare and rest.

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