Frick Art & Historical Center

Through October 5
Tuesday – Sunday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

One of history’s most significant Impressionist artists is the subject of a new exhibition at The Frick Art & Historical Center. Opening with a pubic reception on Friday, June 27th, Edgar Degas: The Private Impressionist—Works on Paper by the Artist and his Circle remains on view at the Point Breeze museum through October 5th.

Among the most acclaimed practitioners of Impressionism, Edgar Degas (1834-1917) is known the world over for his iconic paintings of ballet dancers, horse racers and bathers. Featuring more than 100 works on paper, Edgar Degas: The Private Impressionist illuminates the artist’s personal life, creative restlessness and experimentation, and wider artistic circle.

The compelling collection provides museum visitors with a rare glimpse into Degas’ personal interests and motivations, as well as his creative practice and experimentation, via his most famous subjects, the people who were close to him and the types of artworks he collected. Built around a core group of 55 works by Degas, who is widely considered to be one of the most gifted draftsmen of the Impressionist circle, the exhibit features examples spanning mediums and periods, from early drawings to late experiments in photography, in addition to etchings and monoprints.

Augmented by more than 50 works by Degas’ contemporaries, the show also features work by fellow Impressionist masters such as Paul Cézanne (1839-1906); Honoré Daumier (1808-1879); Camille Pissarro (1830-1903); Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres (1780-1867); Édouard Manet (1832-1883); Mary Cassatt (1844-1926); Gustave Moreau (1826-1898); and Jean-Léon Gérôme (1824-1904). Museum-goers will learn about Degas’ inspirational meeting with Ingres in 1855, his studies at the famed Ecole des Beaux-Arts, his pivotal years in Italy where he drew and painted copies after Michelangelo, Raphael and Titian, his early interest in exploring the individual in modern society, his important friendships with like-minded artists such as Manet and his travels to America in 1872.

A number of photographs on view convey Degas’ championing of what at the time was a new artistic medium. Degas, who often photographed his friends, including luminaries such as the composers Amédée-Ernest Chausson and Achille-Claude Debussy, was particularly interested in creating formal compositions and exploring the dramatic effects of light.

Fans of Degas won’t want to miss the chance to explore the artist’s work in more depth during a special lecture on Saturday, June 28th, with the exhibition collector, Robert Flynn Johnson. During Collecting as a Journey—Chasing the Art of Edgar Degas for Forty Years, Johnson, who is also curator emeritus of San Francisco’s Fine Arts Museums, will share insights into his philosophy and experience collecting the work of the celebrated Impressionist and his contemporaries. The lecture takes place at 1 p.m. at The Frick Art Museum. Advance registration and payment are required: 412-371-0600.

Reservations are recommended for the public opening celebration on June 27th: 412-371-0600.

Jennifer has worked at the Mattress Factory, Brooklyn Museum of Art and Dahesh Museum of Art and is co-author of Pittsburgh Signs Project: 250 Signs of Western Pennsylvania. She also is co-coordinator of Handmade Arcade. Musically, she is in a band called The Garment District and is a founding member of Brooklyn's The Ladybug Transistor.