Edgar Degas - Race horses 1888

Race horses 1888
Race horses
1888 30x40cm pastel/wood
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City

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From Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City:
Degas undertook racing scenes throughout his career, characteristically manipulating his horses and jockeys from one picture to the next. All the figures here appear in earlier works, and some of the poses have pedigrees even more distinguished than the horses: the prancing mount and rider at the center derive from Benozzo Gozzoli's Journey of the Magi in the Palazzo Medici-Riccardi, Florence, which Degas had copied in 1859. This picture is nevertheless unusual for its medium—pastel on a plain, unvarnished panel. With skillful economy of means, Degas allowed the wood to color the sky and distant landscape, and to provide a warm undertone for the turf in the foreground.