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Head of a Young Man in Profile

Artist Edgar Degas (French, 1834–1917)
Title Head of a Young Man in Profile (Tete de jeune homme vue de profil)
Date Ca. 1856–1857
Medium Black chalk on blue paper
Dimensions Image: 19 1/8 × 12 in. (48.6 × 30.5 cm)
Sheet: 19 1/8 × 12 in. (48.6 × 30.5 cm)
Framed: 27 1/2 × 20 13/16 × 1 3/4 in. (69.9 × 52.9 × 4.4 cm)
Credit Line Evan F. Lilly Memorial, Gift of Thomas T. Solley, Eskenazi Museum of Art, Indiana University
Accession Number 77.35

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About this Work

Although a leader of the French avant-garde style known as Impressionism, Edgar Degas, like most artists of his generation, received an academic art education. He trained at the École des Beaux-Arts under a follower of the neoclassical painter Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres. In this head study, Degas emulated the older artist’s careful draftsmanship and classicizing manner. Although the identity of the model is unknown, the drawing was probably made in Rome, where Degas sometimes worked at the French Academy in the Villa Medici (October 1856 to July 1857). The artist’s interest in portraiture continued, although he became more concerned with how a person’s psychology could be revealed by their physiognomy.

Provenance research is ongoing for this and many other items in the Eskenazi Museum of Art permanent collection. For more information about the provenance of this artwork, please contact the department curator with specific questions.

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"Head of a Young Man in Profile | Collections Online." Collections Online. Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art, Indiana University, 2024.