Peasant Girls Bathing in the Sea at Dusk (1875-76) by Edgar Degas

Peasant Girls Bathing in the Sea at Dusk - Edgar Degas - c.1875

Artwork Information

TitlePeasant Girls Bathing in the Sea at Dusk
ArtistEdgar Degas
MediumOil on Canvas
Dimensions25 5/8 x 31 7/8 in (65 x 81 cm)
Art MovementImpressionism
Current LocationPrivate Collection

About Peasant Girls Bathing in the Sea at Dusk

The artwork titled “Peasant Girls Bathing in the Sea at Dusk” is an oil on canvas painting completed around 1875 by the renowned Impressionist artist Edgar Degas. It is a product of the Impressionist movement, embodying the genre of nude painting. The dimensions of the artwork are 25 5/8 by 31 7/8 inches (65 by 81 cm), and it is presently held within a private collection.

The artwork captures a scene of raw simplicity and candid beauty, illustrating several figures by the seaside. The central focus is on three nude female figures whose postures and movements suggest the act of bathing. They stand in shallow waters, with one figure leading towards the left and two interacting near the center. Their bodies are rendered with loose, expressive brushstrokes typical of the Impressionist style, conveying the play of light and shadow while emphasizing the form and volume of their figures.

In the background, we witness a twilight sky imbued with warm hues of orange, suggestive of the setting sun. This bathes the seascape and the figures in a subtle, evaporating light, reinforcing the title’s reference to dusk. The scene is further enhanced by the muted colors and the impression of motion in the water, which surrounds the bathers. On the right, additional figures appear, including a seated woman in the midground who is partly draped and tending to a child.

The artwork exemplifies Degas’s masterful ability to capture not only the human form in its natural state but also the fleeting moments of everyday life. His unique interpretation of Impressionist techniques is evident in the combination of realistic observation and the atmospheric conditions of the scene, resulting in a sensitive and intimate portrayal of a serene and transient moment at the close of day.

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