Edgar Degas (French, 18341917)
Bronze, number 45/A; 17 x 8 3/8 x 6 in. (43.2 x 22.2 x 15.2 cm)
H. O. Havemeyer Collection, Bequest of Mrs. H. O. Havemeyer, 1929 (29.100.395)
This is one of three sculptures by Degasthe second also called Spanish Dance, and the third, Dancer with Tambourinethat are part of a group which includes several drawings and pastels illuminating a dancer in nearly the same pose. Two of the drawings, now in the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, are studies for the cover of a program for an event presented in 1884 by the pupils of the Lycée de Nantes at the Galerie Poursin in Paris. The Spanish Dancer was first cast in plaster by the founder of the bronzes, Adrien Hébrard, about 1900 to 1903. It is one of the few pieces of sculpture that Degas allowed to be cast in a medium that is more durable than wax or clay.