Limited Edition Degas French Etching 'Famille Cardinal' Series 1948..332/500.
From the Monotype Series 'La Famille Cardinal' comes this beautifully colored French Etching by Edgar Degas (1834-1917)...entitled 'Ludovic Halevy finds Madam Cardinal in the Dressing Room' (Madam Cardinal dans une Lodge).
It is one of a series of monotypes crafted by the French master Edgar Degas for a collection of stories about the ballet by Ludovic Halevy.. "La Famille Cardinal".. a satire of social climbing ballet dancers, controlling stage mothers and the back stage sex trade...specifically documenting the backstage life of sisters Pauline and Virginie Cardinal at the Paris Opera.
Degas loved the book and created the monotypes to illustrate a second edition of the book in 1887. Because Halevy related the stories in the 'first person' Degas included him in 9 of the monotypes, and he is the gentleman in the black top hat on the left in this fine example.
The author did not publish the monotypes and they were never signed or issued until many years after Degas death, when, in 1938 they were acquired by Blaizot and published as etching illustrations.
My listed etching was published 10 years later in 1948 by French Art Printer Imprimerie G Bouan and colored by Les Ateliers Dreux-Barry, Paris, in a limited edition of 1000. The first 500 of which were 'pulled' for the Shoman Art Company, Long Island, New York and this is numbered 332 of that edition.
Edgar Degas is known for his off-centre compositions, perspective and analysis of movement. Descended from an aristocratic family 'De Gas', he hid his pedigree and preferred to work amongst the working class ballet dancers and back stage hands.
Printed on fine watermarked Marais paper and gently tipped onto a matt it measures 6 1/4" x 8" for the subject and the entire sheet is 9" x 11 1/2".
With a strong plate mark and some all-over age discoloration it is in very good condition.
The original monotype of this etching sold in 2010 at auction for $746,500.00 USD..making this slightly later issue a very affordable alternative.
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