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Degas . Degas’ shifting painting style Suzanna Mayer. Edgar Degas . 1834-1912 Born into a wealthy banking family He went to college to become a lawyer but then abandoned that for painting . Degas Early Painting. He copied several classical images in the Louvre and in Italy

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degas

Degas

Degas’ shifting painting style

Suzanna Mayer

edgar degas
Edgar Degas
  • 1834-1912
  • Born into a wealthy banking family
  • He went to college to become a lawyer but then abandoned that for painting
degas early painting
Degas Early Painting
  • He copied several classical images in the Louvre and in Italy
  • Most from the 15th-16th century
  • Oil on canvas
painting cont
Painting (cont.)
  • After copying old masters in Italy he returned to Paris where he mostly painted portraits
  • He presented at the Paris Salon repeatedly for 5 years soon after he returned
  • However he started loosing his eyesight around the last year he showed at the salon
late painting cont
Late Painting (cont.)
  • His eyesight was bad and as a result he started using mediums that didn’trequire much detail such as pastels and sculpture
  • During this period he produced many of his famous ballet images and pastel images
  • He then moved to more landscape scenes
  • The last 5-6 years of his life he didn’t paint as much because he was going blind
  • He became very depressed and even said “I would like to be famous but unknown”
ballet
Ballet
  • He believed painting and ballet to be similar: they both require hours and hours of practice and repetition of positions
  • He attempted to not only capture the beauty of ballet but also the work and discipline behind it
style
Style
  • Almost every Degas image involved movement
  • He however did not paint rapidly to capture a moment but was very careful and detailed in a controlled environment
  • He moved to pastels and other “dead” mediums for painting, he saw oil paint as a limitation
style1
Style
  • Towards the end of his life he turned more to sculpture to express himself as well as his brightest pastels
t echniques
Techniques
  • He often mixed his pastels in a liquid so much that it became almost like paste it got so thick
  • In addition to his pastels he used charcoal and often layered the pastels
  • He sometimes passed his charcoal images through a press to get an inverse print from the excess charcoal on the page
  • He focused more on the movement and color rather then sharp lines and accurate depictions toward the end of his life using pastels and sculpture
facts
Facts
  • Manet introduces degas to impressionism which is what he left his pursit of being a lawyer for
  • Also took photographs but refused to show them despite him being very proud of them