A Passion for Perfection

Edgar Degas, Racehorses at Longchamp, 1871, possibly reworked in 1874. Oil paint on canvas; 34.0 x 41.9 cm (13-3/8 x 16-1/2 in.). Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, S.A. Denio Collection: Sylvanus Adams Denio Fund and General Income, 03.1034. Photograph © 2017 Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Edgar Degas, The Conversation, 1885–95. Oil paint on canvas. Framed: 28-3/8 x 33 in.; unframed: 19-3/4 x 24 in. Yale University Art Gallery, Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Mellon, B.A. 1929, L.H.D.H 1967.

Edgar Degas, Dance Examination (Examen de Danse), 1880. Pastel on paper; 24-1/2 x 18 in. Denver Art Museum; anonymous gift. 1941.6

Edgar Degas, Woman Scratching Her Back, 1881. Pastel on paper; 15 7/8 x 16 ¼ in. Denver Art Museum: The Edward & Tullah Hanley Memorial Gift for the People of Denver and the area, 1973.161.

Edgar Degas, Four Ballet Dancers on Stage (Quatro Bailarinas em Cena), 1885 / 1890. Oil paint on canvas; 28-3/4 x 36-1/4 in. (73 x 92 cm). Gift, Walther Moreira Salles, Simone Pilon, Jacques Pilon, Benedito Manhães Barreto, um comissário de café em Santos [a coffee commissioner in Santos], Industriais da Juta de São Paulo e [and] Diários Associados de São Paulo, 1950. Inv. MASP.00082 Collection: Museu de Arte de São Paulo Assis Chateaubriand. Photo by João Musa.

Edgar Degas, Self-Portrait, 1857, drypoint on paper, from a cancelled plate © The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.

Edgar Degas, Dancers, about 1900. Pastel and charcoal on tracing paper, mounted on wove paper, mounted on board. 37-5/8 x 26-3/4 in. Memorial Art Gallery of the University of Rochester: Gift of Mrs. Charles H. Babcock. Courtesy, Memorial Art Gallery of the University of Rochester.

Edgar Degas, Dancer with Bouquets, about 1895—1900. Oil paint on canvas; 71 x 60 in. Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk, VA: Gift of Walter P. Chrysler, Jr., in memory of Della Viola Forker Chrysler.

Edgar Degas, Three Women at the Races, (Trois femmes aux courses), about 1885. Pastel on paper; 27 x 27 in. Denver Art Museum: Anonymous gift, 1973.234

Edgar Degas, Scene of War in the Middle Ages, c. 1865, oil (essence) on paper laid down on canvas. Musée d’Orsay, Paris: Erich Lessing / Art Resource, NY.

Edgar Degas, David and Goliath, 1859, oil on canvas © The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.

Edgar Degas, Fourth Position Front, on the Left Leg, probably cast c. 1921 (original wax modelled c. 1885-90), copper alloy © The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.

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Member Tours

Enjoy a guided tour of the exhibition at 1 pm weekdays. Space is limited. Advance purchase recommended. ($3 in addition to exhibition ticket price.) Member Tour Tickets >>

4-Session Course—Degas: An Artistic Journey

Saturdays, April 14, 21, and May 12, 19, 2:30-4 pm

Delve into the world of Edgar Degas in this four-part course that will explore the influences, evolution, and independence of the iconic artist. Ticketed with a member discount.

Degas: A Passion for Perfection is organized by the Fitzwilliam Museum, University of Cambridge, in association with the Denver Art Museum. It is presented with generous support from Diane Stanbro, Robert and Carolyn Barnett, the donors to the Annual Fund Leadership Campaign, and the citizens who support the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD). This exhibition is supported by an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities. Promotional support is provided by 5280 Magazine, CBS4, Comcast Spotlight, and The Denver Post.