This picture is a pure pastel, whose range of textures—from gleaming silk to airy tulle to powdery, gas-lit flesh—Degas seems to have achieved without wetting or mixing media. Two corps de ballet dancers, peculiarly anonymous in their matching costumes and poses, turn “upstage,” away from an imaginary audience beyond the picture plane. Although these women might at first seem caught unawares, like Degas’s many bathers, the elegant artifice of their movements and attire reminds us that this is a performance staged for our enjoyment.
- Artist Name: Edgar Degas (French, 1834-1917)
- Title: Dancers in Pink
- Date: c. 1886
- Medium: Pastel on paper, mounted on cardboard
- Dimensions: 28-1/2 x 15-1/4 in. (72.4 x 38.7 cm)
- Credit Line: The Norton Simon Foundation
- Accession Number: F.1969.05.1.P
- Copyright: © The Norton Simon Foundation
[Durand-Ruel, Paris, stock no. 890, sold 22 November 1886 for Ff 800 to];
Henri Lerolle, Paris, still in 1937.
[Hector Brâme, Paris].
[Jacques Seligmann & Co., Inc., Paris and New York, by 1939].
Leonard C. Hanna, Jr., Cleveland, by 1946.
[E.V. Thaw & Co., New York, sold 1969 to];
The Norton Simon Foundation (sale, London, Sotheby Parke Bernet, 1 July 1980, lot 32a, ill., as Danseuses roses, bought-in).
- Phoenix, Phoenix Art Museum, 1969-08-18 to 1969-12-15
- Miliken, W., In Memoriam: Leonard C. Hanna, Jr.,no. 12
- Masterpieces from the Norton Simon Museum,1989, p. 144
- Kendall, Richard and Jill DeVonyar, Degas and the Dance, exhibition catalogue,fig. 198, color p. 177
- Lemoisne, Paul-André, Degas et son oeuvre,no. 486
- Sotheby's, Sotheby's Impressionist and Modern Art, part one,fig. 4 p. 43
- Russoli, Franco; and Fiorella Minervino, L'opera completa di Degas,no. 524
- Campbell, Sara et al., Degas in the Norton Simon Museum,2009, Fig. 22 p. 183
- Browse, Lillian, Degas Dancers,no. 162, pl. 162
- Lafond, Paul, Degas, p. 30
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