Edgar Degas

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Edgar Degas
Two Studies of Dancers
ca. 1873
Black and white chalk on green paper.
17 1/2 x 11 3/8 inches (446 x 291 mm)
Thaw Collection.

The principal figure on this sheet appears in two versions of the painting The Rehearsal (Harvard University Art Museums and Shelburne Museum, Vermont). The secondary figure on the sheet, with her hands adjusting the ties on her skirt, was used for the Harvard canvas only. Degas often made multiple studies on a page, in this case turning the sheet ninety degrees to produce a separate study. He selected vividly colored papers for studies in black and white chalks. The middle tone of the paper allowed him to maximize their tonal range. The summary description of the faces reveals the artist's greater interest in determining how light from the rehearsal studio windows would illumine the figures. --Exhibition Label, from “Degas: Drawings and Sketchbooks”


Watermark: none visible through lining.

Third Degas atelier sale; Eugene V. and Clare E. Thaw, New York.
Associated names: 

Thaw, Eugene Victor, former owner.
Thaw, Clare, former owner.


Thaw Catalogue Raisonné, 2017, no. 81, repr.
Denison, Cara D. et al. Drawings from the Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Eugene Victor Thaw. Part II. New York : Pierpont Morgan Library, 1985, no. 44.

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