Self-Portrait, c. 1857, etching and drypoint on paper by Edgar Degas (Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute)
Special Installation: Edgar Degas: Portraits and Self-Portraits
May 14, 2004 - July 18, 2004
Beyond his achievements as one of the leading painters of his generation, Edgar Degas was also a gifted graphic artist who produced a significant body of prints and drawings throughout his long career. He demonstrated his sensitivity to portraiture at a young age, using himself and his family members as models. In his mature works Degas increasingly experimented with unconventional poses to capture the personalities of his sitters. During the mid-1890s, he embraced the medium of photography and through it continued his self-analysis. Degas’s artist colleagues also found in him a willing subject for portraits that are occasionally humorous in tone.