Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Degas and the Nude

I ventured into Boston last week to see the special exhibit at Museum of Fine Arts. It was enlightening and generally fabulous. Nothing beats seeing (or hearing) your favorite artists' work in person, up close and 'live'.

Thank you , Peter Layman, for introducing me to the work of Edgar Degas in high school art class. I have sought out his paintings, pastels, prints, drawings and sculpture for almost 50 years now and this is a blockbuster show! There are pieces in this show loaned from Musee d'Orsay in Paris and private collections, as well as museum collections around the world.

Degas was not only a superior draftsman, colorist and designer, he had wit and a sense of humor, too.

He was interested throughout his career in depicting working women; ballet dancers, artist models, laundresses, and prostitutes. He draws and paints them with respect and admiration. When choosing your companions for seeing this show keep in mind the title - there are plenty of ballet dancers in bronze...sans tutus.

If you miss it in Boston (closing Feb 5) it will travel to Paris later in 2012. Too bad it is not making more stops in North America, but by some of the overheard comments at the exhibit, maybe it would not be widely appreciated in this country of prudes.

I think the catalogue is very good and I am glad I read it before I saw the exhibition.

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