As Degas strove to represent the female body with greater truth, women engaged in the intimate rituals of both the bath and the brothel became his frequent themes. During the 1870s, when novels by J.-K. Huysmans, Edmond de Goncourt, and Émile Zola focused on the flourishing profession of prostitution, Degas too studied the world of the maisons closes, and made about fifty smudged drawings in greasy ink on glass or metal plates which he printed as monotypes.
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Artist:Edgar Degas (French, Paris 1834–1917 Paris)
Medium:Monotype in black ink on white heavy laid paper
Dimensions:plate: 16 3/4 x 23 1/16 in. (42.5 x 58.6 cm) sheet: 19 3/4 x 25 1/2 in. (50.2 x 64.8 cm)
Credit Line:Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, The Elisha Whittelsey Collection, The Elisha Whittelsey Fund, and C. Douglas Dillon Gift, 1968
Gustave Pellet (French)until 1919; Previously owned, by descent, Maurice Exteens(to at least 1937); César de Hauke; Le Vésinet (Private Collection); Private collection, France; Hector Brame(from whom MMA purchased)
Paris. Galeries nationales du Grand Palais. "Degas," February 9–May 16, 1988.
Ottawa. National Gallery of Canada. "Degas," June 16–August 28, 1988.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Degas," September 27, 1988–January 8, 1989.
Ordrupgaardsamlingen, Copenhagen. "Degas Monotypes," October 14, 1994–December 31, 1994.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Private Collection of Edgar Degas," October 1, 1997–January 11, 1998.
Musée Picasso. "Scenes of Modernity," May 1, 2005–July 31, 2005.
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra. "Degas: The Uncontested Master," December 12, 2008–March 22, 2009.
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. "Degas and the Nude," October 9, 2011–February 5, 2012.
Paris. Musée d'Orsay. "Degas et le nu," March 12, 2012–July 1, 2012.
New York. Museum of Modern Art. "Edgar Degas: A Strange New Beauty," March 26–July 24, 2016.
Jacob Bean, John J. McKendry "A Fortunate Year." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin. New Series, 27, no. 6, February 1969, pp. 320-21., ill.
Colta Ives, Janet S. Byrne, Mary L. Myers, Suzanne Boorsch, Weston J. Naef, David W. Kiehl, The Metropolitan Museum of Art The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Notable Acquisitions, 1965-1975: Prints, Architecture and Ornament. New York, 1975, p. 186, ill.
Sue Welsh Reed, Eugenia Parry Janis, Barbara Stern Shapiro, David W. Kiehl, Colta Ives, Michael Mazur The Painterly Print: Monotypes from the Seventeenth to the Twentieth Century. Ex. cat. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1980, cat. no. 23, pp. 98-100, ill.
Colta Ives "French Prints in the Era of Impressionism and Symbolism." in The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1988 (Summer), pp. 18-19, ill.
Jean Sutherland Boggs, Douglas Druick, Henri Loyrette, Michael Pantazzi, Gary Tinterow Degas. Ex. cat.: Paris, Ottawa, MMA, 1988-1989. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Réunion des Musées Nationaux, National Museums of Canada, New York and Ottawa, 1988-89, cat. no. 197, p. 309, ill.
Jane Kinsman, Michael Pantazzi Degas: The Uncontested Master. Exh. cat. National Gallery of Australia, Reprinted and revised 2009. Canberra, 2008-2009, cat. no. 43, p. 108, ill.
George T. M. Shackelford, Xavier Rey Degas and the Nude. Exh. cat., Museum of fine Arts, Boston, Oct. 9, 2011-Feb. 5, 2012 ; and Musée d'Orsay, Paris March 12-July 1. Boston, 2012, fig. no. 94, 90, 91, 224, ill.
Jodi Hauptman, Museum of Modern Art Degas: A Strange New Beauty. Museum of Modern Art, New York, 2016, cat. no. 102, fig. no. 4 (detail), pp. 50, 156 and 232, ill.
en passant: Impressionism in Sculpture. ex. cat., Städel Museum. Frankfurt, March 19-June 28. Alexander Eiling, Eva Mongi-Vollmer, 2020, fig. no. 9, p. 300.
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