拍品 36
  • 36

埃德加∙德加 《梳洗中的女子》

估價
500,000 - 700,000 GBP
已售出
730,000 GBP
招標截止

描述

  • 埃德加·德加
  • 《梳洗中的女子》
  • 款識:藝術家蓋印Degas(左下);模糊蓋印Atelier Edgar Degas(藝術家畫板背面)
  • 粉彩聯紙本,貼於藝術家畫板

來源

藝術家身後(售出:巴黎喬治·帕蒂畫廊,「埃德加·德加畫室拍賣第二回」,1918年12月11-13日,拍品編號79)
努尼斯與菲凱收藏,巴黎
拍賣:倫敦蘇富比,1965年6月23日,拍品編號142
貝耶勒畫廊,巴塞爾(購自上述拍賣)
亨利·舍費爾,蘇黎世(1966年6月購自上述畫廊;至少收藏至1995年)
西蒙·迪金森畫廊,倫敦
私人收藏,美國
現藏家2005年購自上述收藏

展覽

巴塞爾,貝耶勒畫廊,〈圍繞印象派〉,1966年,品號9,圖錄載彩圖

倫敦,倫敦皇家藝術學院;東京,Sezon現代美術館;名古屋,松坂屋美術館,〈從馬奈到高更:瑞士私人收藏大師傑作〉,1995-96年,品號13,圖錄載彩圖(紀年1885-90)

出版

保羅·安德烈·勒穆瓦纳,《德加與其作品》,巴黎,1946年,第III冊,品號1286,747頁載圖

拍品資料及來源

Few subjects in Degas's œuvre are as visually enticing and seductive as his bathers. These voyeuristic scenes of nude women, pampering themselves at their toilettes, have earned their place among the most desirable images in the history of modern art. During the 1890s Degas’s pastels became progressively bolder and more innovative. Compared to the works of the 1880s, they are characterised by greater technical creativity, increasing emphasis on textures and vibrant colours and a general softening of contours which sometimes verge on the abstract. Van Gogh and Gauguin were both great admirers of Degas’s bathers, which in both composition and technique are precursors of twentieth century art.

In his pastels of the 1890s, Degas’s focus moved away from the linear towards a new interest in colour, and the present work is a magnificent example of his new found freedom of expression, allowing the artist to transform an everyday scene into vibrant compositions. This sense of spontaneity in execution is also reflected in his technique of adding strips of paper to the edges of the sheet. Degas often employed this practice in his mature works, adapting the size and shape of his support in such a way as to suite the emerging composition. For all their daring modernity and an often shocking effect they had on their contemporary nineteenth-century audience, Degas’ images of bathers were greatly admired at the time. The early critic Joris-Karl Huysmans discussed the series of bather pastels: ‘What we may see in these works is the unforgettable veracity of these types, captured with a deep-seated and ample draughtsmanship, with a lucid and controlled passion, as though with a cold fever; what is to be seen is the ardent and subtle colouring, the mysterious and opulent tone of these scenes; the supreme beauty of this flesh tinted pink or blue by water, illuminated by windows hung with gauze in dim rooms’ (quoted in Robert Gordon & Andrew Forge, Degas, London, 1988, p. 231). 

Seen from the side, the woman's upper body is twisted towards the viewer, while her head is turned the other way, as if completely unaware of the spectator's gaze. She is captured leaning over a bowl of water in the routine, calm movement of washing herself. In painting his nudes and semi-nudes, whom Degas studied so assiduously in the intimate confines of their boudoirs, the artist was interested in exploring the female body, rather than in representing his sitters as individuals. Degas rarely personified them, and concentrated instead on depicting the human form in a variety of rituals and movements. In his works on the subject of women at their toilette, the artist often depicted them in the process of washing, as in the present work, or drying various parts of their body, which allowed him to explore unusual contortions of the nude.

The present work is one of the more heavily-worked compositions from a group of at least eight pastels from the late 1890s, depicting the same subject (P.-A. Lemoisne, op. cit., nos. 1285-1292). Richard Kendall wrote of this group: ‘Varying only slightly in details of posture and setting […] all these pictures centre on the action of a woman drying or sponging her breast. In each case the model’s face is shadowed or inclined, her identity signaled neither by her surroundings nor the nature of her banal ritual. She might be washing at daybreak or preparing for a lover, displaying her charms or toweling after a day’s work; the point of Degas’s composition, however, is that all these readings are made possible but none is insisted upon. The washbowl and jug are virtually classless, as are the other items appearing in variant renderings, and without a knowing glance or a symbolic accessory, a meaningful picture on the wall or a suggestive human presence, we are once again denied a narrative. Our attention is drawn to the woman herself. And specifically to her rhythmic movement and graphically realized musculature, expressing both the laboriousness and the practicality of her task. […] It is only in the last decade of the century […] that his priorities shifted unmistakably from the documentary to the expressive, embodying the textures of the woman’s skin in his coloured chalks and her dignified mass in its tints and shadows’ (R. Kendall, Degas Beyond Impressionism (exhibition catalogue), London, 1996, pp. 148-149).

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