The reality of Degas
Born rich to noble French bankers he followed, as usual, the wishes of his father who wanted him to be a magistrate. A few days after earning his law degree he enrolled as a copyist at the Louvre.
Art also imposed itself on the ideas of the father who decided to support him as long as he applied himself with commitment to his passion. He created a personal "Grand Tour" in Italy and returned to France on the reminders of his father after more than 3 years in which he absorbed, copied and learned everything he could from Italian art.
His stylistic choice was mature: Degas wanted to "take back the real" as it was and nothing more. Passionate about photography, he gave his paintings a “snapshot” cut by cutting figures, scenes and environments without problems, not worrying about the compositional structure if not a posteriori.
Despite his belief, the deep friendship with Manet and the frequentation of the Impressionists, his painting was the opposite. Immediacy, touch of the brush without second thoughts and spontaneity for the Impressionists; drawing, preparatory sketches and photographs for Degas.
As Degas lost his friends and economic security upon the death of the father. His particular character distanced him from others more and more. In the famous "Dreyfus case" he was forcefully against the unjustly accused Jewish officer: he was left alone.
Life also takes away from him what is everything for a painter: sight. He had nothing left. We are left with the images of his paintings to tell us the reality of his time and the emotions of this great painter.