Throughout his career Degas depicted scenes from the opera and ballet. He was particularly intrigued by the unusual poses that the dancers would assume.
In this major pastel Degas depicts four dancers waiting in the wings during a performance. While their various positions are indeed awkward and their faces have been obscured, the work has an overwhelming richness of texture and color.
Edgar Degas (French, 1834-1917)
Dancers with Fans, 1899
Pastel on paper, 24 ½ x 27 ½ in.
The Ella Gallup Sumner and Mary Catlin Sumner Collection Fund, 1945.209
Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Hartford, CT
Available in 11 x 14 or 22 x 24 in.11 x 14 print has an image size of 9 x 10 in.