degas hard cover5.0 out of 5 stars Offbeat and fascinating. Reviewed in the United States on January 28, 2014 Format: Hardcover
degas hard cover5.0 out of 5 stars
Offbeat and fascinating.
Reviewed in the United States on January 28, 2014
So you think you know your Degas? Most of us definitely don't. The women in Degas' paintings, including the dainty ballet dancers and the girls milling around backstage, cannot be easily separated from the ethos of commercial availability of females in the Paris of the 1870s. As the text points out, if a woman was out on her own and self-supporting, it was reasonable to assume she was available from horizontal sporting for a fee. This included shopgirls, laundresses, owners of small shops designing hats and even ballet dancers. "In the last thirty years of the 19th century when Degas painted and drew his images of dancers, the ballet was going through an artistic trough and was far from the respected and elevated art form it has been ever since Diaghilev." And we are given the name of a ballerina who grew tired of kicking up her legs for the paltry sums inherent in her calling. These are but details in Degas's lifelong obsession with prostitutes,
The text carries us far beyond any guide book to Paris brothels in the 1870s. It conveys to us how women were viewed by Degas when he painted them, immersed as he was in the frenzies of his era. After savoring the text and seeing the hidden away sketches, we'll never view these paintings in the same old way.
Helpful . some wear and stains on the outside of the hardcover lower right side.
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