Wheat Field and Green Hill

Edgar Degas (French, 1834-1917)
c. 1890-1892
Pastel over monotype in oil colors on paper 
image: 10 x 13-5/8 in. (25.4 x 34.6 cm); sheet: 10-5/8 x 14-1/8 in. (27.0 x 35.9 cm) 
Credit Line:
The Norton Simon Foundation 
Accession Number:
© The Norton Simon Foundation 
Not on View

A consummate urbanite who often railed against his Impressionist colleagues for painting landscapes en plein air, Edgar Degas nevertheless turned his focus toward the out-of-doors in the latter part of his career. During a trip to Burgundy in 1890, the artist best known for his images of Parisian dancers and working women began a series of landscape monotypes. Degas made these ethereal, often unrecognizable vistas using a two-step process. First he applied oil paint to a metal plate, wiping paint away and using his fingers to manipulate the image. After running the plate through a press onto wet paper, he worked up the “printed” image with pastel. The result, as in Wheat Field and Green Hill, is an exquisite contrast of textures. Here the printed underlayer of soft yellow sky leaves a hazy glow of pigment punctuated by the dramatic bursts of pastel that define the landscape below.


[Durand-Ruel, Paris, bought from the artist June 2,1893, for Ff 1000];
Mr. and Mrs. H. O. Havemeyer, New York, bought from Durand-Ruel in 1984 or 1985, until 1907, by inheritance in 1907 to;
Mrs. H. O. Havemeyer, New York, from 1907-29, by inheritance to;
Horace Havemeyer, New York, 1929-1956, by inheritance in 1956 to;
Doris Havemeyer, New York, 1956-1982, (sale, New York, Sotheby's, 13-18 May 1983, lot 2, to);
The Norton Simon Foundation.

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