Edgar Degas (1834-1917)
The course of life of the Parisian painter had few dramatic peaks. Being the eldest son of a well-to-do family the cynical, snobby loner was able to devote his life to the arts. Furthermore, he remained a bachelor, because: ‘There is love and there is work, and we only have one heart.’ His classical education can be recognised in his earlier work, in particular the strict composition and lining inspired by Inges whom he greatly admired. Although he referred to himself as an ‘independent realist’, he was very much involved in the impressionistic revolution and the themes and techniques developed in his works are considered to have formed the synthesis between the traditional and modern art of painting.