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Danceuse sur scène, salutant

Edgar Degas

Artwork Details

Danceuse sur scène, salutant
Edgar Degas
aquatint and drypoint on Arches beige laid paper
11 13/16 in x 9 7/16 in x 9/16 in (30 cm x 23.97 cm x 1.43 cm)
Gift of Ruth W. and Clarence J. Boldt, Jr.


Subject Matter:

The ballet dancer, the subject matter of this print, is probably Degas' most well known subject; he created a number of works in print, paint and bronze with this theme. In the late 19th century, ballet was not the high-brow activity it is today, therefore the subject fit into the more urbane and bohemian scenes of Parisian life also depicted by his contemporaries. As an Impressionist, this theme both allowed him a chance to experiment with line, color and movement and at the same time be a pleasurable subject matter for Degas.

This particular print came out of a series of design collaborations with the printmaker August Lauzet. After Lauzet etched and printed a number of Degas' designs for a 1881 series of etchings, L'Arte impressionniste d'après la collection privée de M. Durand-Ruel, there was a disagreement over quality. In response, Degas designed and etched a new plate for this new print, in fact a tracing of one of Lauzet's designs, in order to produce a more refined image. Here, the strong outlines contrast with the delicate texturing in drypoint and aquatint to create a more impactful image.

Physical Description:

At the center of the print, a figure leans forward with her arms outstretched and one leg pointed behind. The figure wears a large, puffy skirt, with a sleevless top—she is a ballerina. The background is dark and sketchy, and the figure is outlined in strong black lines.

Usage Rights:

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