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What Role Did Photography Play For The Artist Edgar Degas Quizlet

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Throughout his long and prolific career, Pablo Picasso (1881–1973) observed and absorbed the piece of work of other artists. One artist Picasso particularly admired was Edgar Degas (1834–1917). Although the two lived in the same Montmartre neighborhood for several years, until Degas’ death in 1917, there is no prove they ever met. Yet some of Picasso’s kickoff images of Paris clearly echoed the subjects — café-goers, cabaret entertainers, and bathers — that characterize Degas’ work. When Picasso met and married the ballerina Olga Khokhlova, his depictions of her and her milieu similarly drew from the vocabulary established by Degas as the painter of dancers. In 1958 Picasso caused a number of Degas’ provocative monotypes set in brothels, which he considered “the best things [Degas] ever did,” and in a series of etchings from 1971, he envisioned Degas himself within the very setting he had in one case depicted.

Fig. 1:

Edgar Degas (1834–1917),


ca. 1857–1858. Oil on paper, mounted on canvas, 10-1/4 x vii-1/2  inches. Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts Photography by Michael Agee.
Fig. 2:

Pablo Picasso (1881–1973),


1896. Oil on canvas, 13 x nine-ane/ii inches. Museu Picasso, Barcelona. © Museu Picasso, Barcelona / Ramon Muro, © 2010 Manor of Pablo Picasso / Artist Rights Lodge (ARS), New York.

Fig. 3:

Pablo Picasso (1881–1973),

The Bluish Room (The Tub),

1901. Oil on canvas, 19-7/8 10 24-ane/4 inches The Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C. © 2010 Estate of Pablo Picasso / Creative person Rights Society (ARS), New York.

Fig. 4:

Edgar Degas (1834–1917),

The Tub,

ca. 1876­–1877. Monotype, sixteen-i/2 x 21-1/4 inches. Bibliothèque de l’Institut national d’histoire de l’art, Paris. Collections Jacques Doucet © Institut national d’histoire de l’art, Bibliothèque, Collections Jacques Doucet.

Both artists had been academically trained, Degas at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, and Picasso initially under the instruction of his father, who taught drawing, and and so at the Escuela de Bellas Artes in Barcelona. A traditional approach informs many of their early works: Their cocky-portraits (Figs. 1, 2) both take a standard bust-length format, and the stiff, dramatic lighting in Picasso’southward depiction suggests that he drew inspiration from formal studio portraiture. The sitter’southward casual attitude and the roughness of the paint treatment, however, give the work a striking immediacy. The fourteen-year-old artist stares directly outward yet seems uncertain of himself, a pose that reflects his still-boyish condition. Degas, who was almost twenty-three or twenty-four when he painted his self-portrait, presents himself with a similarly guarded expression, his eyes veiled by the shadow of his hat, though his identity equally an artist is more than clearly established past the roughly sketched smock and salmon-colored scarf.

Picasso spent much of the year 1901 in Paris, where he rented a room in Montmartre and immersed himself in the neighborhood’southward creative customs.

The Blue Room

(Fig. 3) depicts his quarters on the boulevard de Clichy, the simply furnished space serving every bit a properties to a model posed in a shallow tub, in the process of bathing. A well-known poster past Toulouse-Lautrec depicting the cabaret performer May Milton appears on the wall, clearly indicating one of the types of art — also as the types of entertainment — that interested Picasso at the time. In a more subtle style, the model’s pose as well echoes numerous bathers that Degas depicted in the 1890s, their awkward, twisting gestures mirrored in the sharply angled neck and shoulders of Picasso’south figure. An earlier piece of work by Degas, the unusually large monotype

The Tub

(Fig. 4), shows the same sort of room as that depicted by Picasso in a like state of casual disorder, the same type of tub, and a model equally absorbed in the solitary chore of her toilette. This impress was in a individual collection by the early twentieth century, so Picasso may take known information technology or seen a reproduction of it.

Fig. 5:

Pablo Picasso (1881–1973),

Portrait of Sebastià Junyer i Vidal,

1903. Oil on canvass, 49-3/4 x 37 inches. Los Angeles County Museum of Fine art. © Museum Associates / LACMA / Art Resource, New York. © 2010 Estate of Pablo Picasso / Artist Rights Guild (ARS), New York.

Fig. half dozen:

Edgar Degas (1834–1917),

In a Café (L’Absinthe),

1875–1876. Oil on canvas, 36-1/4 x 27 inches. Musée d’Orsay, Paris. © Réunion des Musées Nationaux / Art Resource, New York. Photography by Hervé Lewandowski.

Between 1900 and 1904, Picasso sketched and painted numerous images prepare in the cafés and cabarets that he and his bohemian friends frequented both in Barcelona and in Paris. His images focused not merely on the performers but also on the clientele, figures for which Picasso oftentimes asked his friends to pose. Among the largest of these is the

Portrait of Sebastià Junyer i Vidal

(Fig. 5), painted in Barcelona in 1903. While this work may tape a scene the artist observed, it is likewise clearly a response to Degas’ before

In a Café (L’Absinthe)

(Fig. 6). Non but do both works characteristic a male friend of the artist — in Degas’s example information technology is Marcellin Desboutin, an artist and writer just every bit Junyer was — merely both are accompanied past women of implicitly questionable morals. Degas’ sitter, the extra Ellen Andrée, poses in front end of a glass of absinthe with a slumped posture and unfocused gaze, while the unidentified sitter in Picasso’south canvass wears a low-cutting dress and a ruby bloom in her hair that may mark her as a prostitute. Moreover, Degas’ painting was widely known in Paris by the time Picasso began visiting; it was called one of his most well-known paintings past one critic and was reproduced in a major article on his work in 1894. In his canvas Picasso seems deliberately to take reworked a subject identified with Degas and fabricated it his ain.

The Little Dancer Aged 14

(Fig. vii) was the largest sculpture Degas e’er fabricated. When he exhibited the original wax version in 1881, consummate with a gauze tutu and real hair tied with a silk ribbon, it provoked both high praise and harsh criticism. It remained in Degas’ studio for the residuum of his life (an edition of bronzes was cast posthumously) where numerous visitors, including some who also knew Picasso, surely saw it. Cheers to these observers, as well equally to the circulation of several preparatory drawings and their publication in fine art journals, the renown of the work was widespread even when it was not on public view. When Picasso was at piece of work on the many sketches and preparatory works for his

Les Demoiselles d’Avignon

(1907; Museum of Modern Art, New York), he seems to have drawn inspiration from Degas’ famous sculpture.

Standing Nude

(Fig. eight) belongs to a group of works related to the


although the effigy did not reappear in the final painting. The canvas, yet, is about exactly the same height as the

Petty Dancer,

and the figure’s pose, with her hands behind her dorsum and her correct leg frontwards, is equally close to that of the sculpture. Moreover, the radical nature of Degas’ realism also finds an echo in Picasso’s hitting formal experimentation, and the “depravity” that more one critic saw in the older work parallels the implied morality of Picasso’due south figures in the


who were prostitutes in a brothel.

Fig. 7:

Edgar Degas (1834–1917),

Piddling Dancer Aged Fourteen,

1879–1881. Bronze, with gauze tutu and silk ribbon, on wooden base, H. 39 inches. Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts. Photography by Michael Agee.
Fig. 8:

Pablo Picasso (1881–1973),

Standing Nude,

1907. Oil on canvas, 36-v/8 x xvi-7/eight inches. Museo del Novecento, Milan. © 2010 Estate of Pablo Picasso / Creative person Rights Society (ARS), New York.
Fig. 9:

Pablo Picasso (1881–1973),

Two Seated Dancers,

1925. Pencil on paper, nineteen-5/8 ten fifteen-3/4 inches. Individual collection. © 2010 Manor of Pablo Picasso / Artist Rights Lodge (ARS), New York.

In 1917, having agreed to piece of work with Serge Diaghilev on a project for the Ballets Russes, Picasso met Olga Khokhlova, a dancer trained in St. petersburg who had joined the Ballets Russes 6 years earlier. For roughly the next decade, dance subjects became a major theme for the creative person. Initially Olga appeared in many of these images, but her professional career ended afterward the birth of the couple’south son in 1921, so in the spring of 1925, when the family joined Diaghilev in Monte Carlo, Picasso concentrated on other members of the troupe, generally off stage. Inevitably, he had to fence with the precedent set up by Degas, whose extensive dance pictures had come more than fully to lite at the collection sales after his death in 1917.

Ii Seated Dancers

(Fig. ix) combines the linear simplicity of many of Picasso’s drawings of the flow with the flattened forms and multiple viewpoints of Cubism, simply his dancers, if slightly more elegant, agree the same sorts of postures as the two right foreground figures in Degas’

Dancers in the Classroom

(Fig. ten).

In a series of monotypes commonly dated to 1876–1877, Degas explicitly depicted prostitutes in a brothel every bit they interacted with or only waited for clients, socialized, or done themselves. A few of these images belonged to collectors during the artist’s lifetime, but the full extent of the group was revealed just during the sales of Degas’ collection after his death in 1917. Picasso undoubtedly knew of these works past that time if non earlier, and in 1958, every bit his own art drove was growing, he caused ix of the brothel monotypes. Xiii years subsequently, he used these works every bit the inspiration for his etchings depicting brothels, and included Degas himself in the scenes. In Degas’ monotype

Resting on the Bed

(Fig. 11), it is unclear whether the customer has left or is out of view as he approaches the woman on the bed. In Picasso’s carving (Fig. 12), the woman is similarly posed, and looks expectantly toward a male figure who is now explicitly present. The figure is Degas, a literal, if reluctant, participant, dressed in a belong and cravat, hands nervously linked behind his back. With these etchings, made not long before his death in 1973, Picasso confirmed his lifelong fascination with the work and the personality of Edgar Degas.

Fig. 10:

Edgar Degas, (1834–1917),

Dancers in the Classroom,

ca. 1880. Oil on canvas, fifteen-1/2 10 34-13/16 inches. Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts. Photography by Michael Agee.

Fig. 11:

Edgar Degas, (1834–1917),

Resting on the Bed,

ca. 1876–1877. Monotype, 4-3/four 10 6-1/4 inches. Private collection, Switzerland.
Fig. 12:

Pablo Picasso (1881–1973),

Prostitute with a Bracelet and Degas with His Hands Behind His Dorsum,

1971. Etching on paper, 14-1/ii x 19-3/8 inches. Museu Picasso, Barcelona © Museu Picasso, Barcelona 2009 Gasull Fotografia. © 2010 Estate of Pablo Picasso / Creative person Rights Society (ARS), New York.

Picasso Looks at Degas,

organized by the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Plant, Williamstown, Massachusetts, and the Museu Picasso, Barcelona, will be on view June xiii through September 12, 2010; The Clark is the exclusive Due north American venue for the exhibition. The exhibition is supported in part by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities, and with the special cooperation of Fundación Almine y Bernard Ruiz-Picasso para el Arte. For information, visit

world wide

or phone call (413) 458-2303.

Sarah Lees
is associate curator of European art at the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts.


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