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Young Woman with Ibis, Edgar Degas, 1857-62 Ramble & Roam

Young Woman with Ibis, Edgar Degas, 1857-62

This painting was ‘discovered’ in an Edgar Degas retrospective in the late ‘80s and caused quite the stir with its unconventional aura, taking viewers by surprise. Away from his classic ballet, bather and jockey scenes of later years, it was revealed that when he started out as a painter Degas wanted nothing more than to emulate his idols Ingres and Delacroix – striving for historical illustrations full of ancient mythos inspired by Pierre Puvis de Chavannes' works, which were so greatly valued in his circle of friends.

Made during 1857-58 in Rome before returning home to Paris where the Oriental cityscape addition is thought to have been added;you can see how every item has been carefully rendered in detail, while the Ibis are still just roughed in. This is actually the case for much of his art, many are unfinished, and he kept numerous paintings until his death— maybe in the hopes of one day returning to them.