A special edition catalogue will be published in three languages and will include photographic images and explanatory notes for each piece, in addition to fascinating essays discussing the relationship between Edgar Degas’ two and three-dimensional works with appropriate comparisons and variables that help identify the importance of the Degas sculptures. There is some evidence that Degas did not view his sculpture as much more than a means to refine his understanding of subjects and to work through problems for his paintings. He was concerned with grasping the essential qualities of movement, both human and equine, and was very much affected by the photographic studies of horses done by Eadweard Muybridge, who was his contemporary.
Degas was himself a significant innovator in artistic technique and took great interest in the startling advances in photography at the time. It has been suggested that as his eyesight deteriorated over the last half of his life, he turned more to sculpture for his artistic expression. However, he always maintained that he had sculpted for most of his life, and this appears to be the case. It is unclear following the showing of The Little Dancer precisely why Degas never exhibited his sculpture again, although a number of explanations have been advanced. The reception of this singular work elicited a great deal of criticism as well as praise, and the stir created by its inclusion in the Impressionist Exhibition in 1881 may have itself been offensive to Degas. The wax figure, which is about two-thirds life-size, is striking in various ways.
Hardcover, 225 pages, French, English and Greek. 2009.
Born in 1834 as Hilaire-Germain-Edgar de Gas, the artist (Edgar Degas) began sculpting in wax circa 1860. He modeled a...read more