Lessons from the art tour 2

Portraits à la Bourse - Degas

This famous Degas painting reminded me that the revered artists in the museums that I visited were interesting, opinionated, and witty people.  Clearly pimping for the woman beside the building, this rat-faced man is catching the ear of some gentlemen in a line up.

What I loved was the economy of one of the men's hands.  They're a pink scribble, with the most important feature crisply defined: the wedding band.

I also had a laugh when I realized that the black-shod foot visible at the bottom of the pimp's coat was not connected to any figure, but was, instead, a sly joke protruding from the pimp's pants. 

As I stood in the grand museum, looking at what was essentially a naughty joke and a keenly-observed piece of social commentary, Degas felt very human and close.  I've read that he was prickly, but I think I'd have liked him.

Happy painting!

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Thanks, Ingrid. Always enjoy your blog.
Many thanks for being a reader, Barbara!