The Green Dancer (1879) by Edgar Degas

The Green Dancer - Edgar Degas - 1879

Artwork Information

TitleThe Green Dancer
ArtistEdgar Degas
Dimensions66 x 36 cm
Art MovementImpressionism
Current LocationThyssen-Bornemisza Museum, Madrid, Spain

About The Green Dancer

“The Green Dancer,” created by Edgar Degas in 1879, is a pastel work that exemplifies the Impressionist movement. Measuring 66 x 36 cm, this genre painting is part of the collection at the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum in Madrid, Spain.

The artwork depicts a young dancer in motion. She is clad in a green tutu, embellished with orange flowers, which coordinates with her bodice and the ribbons in her hair. The dancer’s pose is lively and dynamic; her right leg is swept behind her as she appears to be caught mid-turn or step, with her arms outstretched in an elegant dance position. Her face is turned towards the viewer, with a soft focus that conveys movement and the ephemeral quality of a moment captured in time.

In the background, other dancers can be seen, with touches of red and orange in their costumes juxtaposing the dominant green hues of the foreground dancer’s tutu. Degas’ signature use of light and shadow is evident in the artwork, adding depth and a sense of realism to the scene. The overall composition, with its blend of vivid colors and fluid lines, showcases Degas’ masterful skill in portraying ballet dancers, a subject that fascinated him throughout his career. The sweeping brushstrokes and delicate yet expressive detail are indicative of the Impressionist style, where the portrayal of light and movement takes precedence over hyper-realistic depiction.

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