Who is Edgar Degas?

During his time, Edgar Degas was a famous French artist, famous for his pastel drawings and oil paintings. He was a prominent figure in the Impressionist movement.

Edgar Degas

Early life

Known as one of the founders of the Impressionist movement, Edgar Degas was a French artist. He was born in Paris, south of Montmartre, to a prosperous family. His father, a banker, encouraged his son to pursue a career in art. Eventually, his parents sent him to a school in Paris.

When he was 13, his mother died. His aunt became unhappy with her husband. Her sadness was reflected in her work.

After attending an atelier in Paris, Edgar traveled to Italy where he studied the works of Michelangelo, Titian, and Leonardo da Vinci. While there, he also met Edouard Manet. The two men shared a dislike for the prevailing art scenario. They wanted to explore contemporary subject matter and advanced techniques.

After returning to France, Edgar worked as a copyist in the Louvre Museum. His work was rejected by influential artists. He became an avid art collector. During the early 1880s, he began to show his work with less well-established impressionists.

He exhibited his first sculpture in 1881. He also painted portraits of his brother Rene and friends. He exhibited his works at the respected Salon, but later stopped exhibiting.

He was an avid collector of a variety of media, including oil, pastel, and acrylic. He also used photographs and Japanese prints. He developed a unique style of compositional technique. He often approached his subjects from unusual angles. He also used innovative combinations of materials.

During the late 1860s, Edgar was influenced by the work of Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres. His drawings reflect Ingres’s influence. He was influenced by the crisp, linear style of Ingres’s work. He became intrigued by the way the lines of the human body lent contour and solidity to compositions.

Impressionist paintings

Often considered the founder of the Impressionist movement, Edgar Degas was a pioneering French painter and a leader of the group. His artworks, particularly pastel drawings, have become icons of the movement. He also influenced several important painters, including Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Walter Sickert, and Mary Cassatt.

Degas’ works feature a variety of subjects, including portraits, landscapes, nudes, and dancers. He was particularly interested in capturing the complexities of the human figure. In particular, he enjoyed drawing ballet dancers.

He was also a master of drawing and was renowned for his ability to draw the body’s musculature. A deep admirer of the old masters, Edgar Degas drew inspiration from Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci. His works also drew on Japanese woodblock prints and photography.

When he was 22 years old, Edgar Degas went to Italy for three years. He studied Italian art and culture and took part in public drawing classes. He traveled to Naples and Rome.

During his time in Italy, Degas became fascinated with the human figure. He painted the human form in a variety of unique angles and positions. He specialized in portraits, dancers, and racehorses. He also experimented with different media, such as pastel and oil. He even worked in wax and cast bronze sculptures.

However, in later years, he began to withdraw from the Paris art world. He also suffered from progressive blindness.

In his notebooks, Degas compiled a collection of various styles and ideas for figure-based paintings. He also produced monotypes, which allow him to print directly onto a metal plate. This technique allowed him to experiment with his work while also working on other pieces at the same time.

The Little Fourteen-Year-Old Dancer, one of Degas’ most well-known works, was outfitted with a real tulle skirt and beribboned wig. It was included in an 1881 Impressionist exhibit in Paris.

Mature style

During the 1860s, Edgar Degas became one of the most celebrated painters of his day. His works were admired for their unique compositional techniques and bold use of colour. His paintings are also said to provide a unique sense of fleeting impressions.

He began his career by copying the Italian Renaissance masters at the Louvre. Later, he began painting dance scenes. His interest in female form remained a recurring theme in his work. He sought to represent the figure in its most complete state.

His first sculpture was exhibited in 1881. However, his public exhibitions of sculpture were few. He did, however, create outdoor scenes from memory. These outdoor scenes are characterized by an interest in light and shade.

He grew up in an art-loving family. His father encouraged his artistic talents, and took him to Paris museums often. He also enrolled in the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris, and studied law for a year.

During the Franco-Prussian war, he enlisted in the National Guard. His father died in 1873. This forced Degas to sell his possessions to avoid a scandal. He retreated from the public eye in old age. But his classical style remained with him throughout his life.

He studied art in Italy and France, and was influenced by Paul Gaugin. He was also a friend of Edouard Manet. He became a member of the anti-establishment movement of the 1870s. These artists met regularly to discuss their desire for change.

Degas’ notebooks contain numerous reflections on his art. He was also fond of experimenting with different media. He painted with pastel and oil paints, and he used several techniques to produce his paintings. He was also known for using off-balance compositions.

Occupation with dancers

During Edgar Degas’ lifetime, he painted a wide range of subjects, but the ones that made the biggest impact on the world of modern art were his dancers paintings. These depicted ballet dancers in various scenes, and are known today as the ‘Degas ballerina’ works.

Edgar Degas first learned to paint in his early days, but later switched to painting more contemporary subjects. In the 1880s, he began to concentrate on dancers and nudes. He was said to have had a deep admiration for the human figure.

In addition to painting portraits, he also made bronze sculptures and pastel drawings. His artworks are now collected from museums all over the world.

He was a member of the French Impressionist movement. He was one of the group’s founding members. He worked with the famous painter Edouard Manet. In his notebooks, he left numerous reflections and ideas for figures-based paintings.

He also created some of the most iconic pastel drawings of all time. His oil paintings have found a place in the collections of museums all over the world.

In his earliest days, he grew up in Paris. He studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. In 1853, he gave up his dreams of becoming a lawyer and embarked on a career as an artist. He inherited a large amount of money from his family. He traveled to Italy and France, and then returned to Paris. He eventually became a prominent member of the French Impressionist movement. He helped defend Paris during the Franco-Prussian War of 1870-71.

After the French Impressionist movement, Degas continued to paint. His work was often criticized, though many acknowledged his genius. He developed a unique style of painting ballet dancers and other nudes.


During the mid-19th century, many writers referred to Edgar Degas as a misogynist. While many critics and scholars played into the misogynist’s theme, few have tried to challenge the idea. Among those who have questioned the characterization of Degas as a misogynist are feminist critics.

In the 1870s and 1880s, Degas produced a series of dance pictures. These depict young, working class women engaged in clandestine professions. The pictures also suggest a stylistic relationship between modernity and femininity. The subject matter is eroticised, but the paintings are not always accurate depictions of reality.

In the 1960s and 1970s, a wave of popular exhibitions helped to reassess Degas’s significance. However, critics in this era were quick to dismiss his “cruel” paintings as a result of maladjustment. The critics argued that the “predatory artist” archetype was prevalent in Degas’ work. They argued that his depictions of working-class women were viewed as clandestine prostitutes.

In fact, Degas’s portrayals of these women are rooted in his personal perception of that world. He saw a relationship between modernity and a class of women who he perceived as lacking compassion. He was also concerned with the connection between work and prostitution. He believed that criminal behaviors were inherited.

When he was questioned about his views, Degas responded sharply. He ended long-term relationships with friends who disagreed with him. He even stopped working in a house where his friends were living.

Throughout his career, Edgar Degas portrayed women in an unfavorable light. He depicted women as weak, inelegant, and distrustful. He was vehemently anti-Semitic. His paintings often featured women in a variety of sensual poses. He used unusual words to describe his models, such as “looking through a keyhole”. His paintings of ballerinas were inelegant, and he flattened the skull of the Little Dancer.