Edgar Degas, like Claude Monet, is considered one of the founders of impressionism. His life was not easy, but he came out of all difficult situations with honor. In his works, Degas could bring the viewer so close to the described situation that one involuntarily begins to participate in the events taking place and experience them together with the heroes of his canvases.
One of these paintings is “The washerwomen ironing”, or as it is also called, “Ironers”. In it, the artist depicted two women laundresses who are in a tiny closet. It can be seen that women earn their living by hard manual labor – typical workers of the early 20th century.
The particular roughness of the primer of the canvas chosen by the artist gives the painting an interesting feature: the oil paint looks like a pastel. The artist almost misses the details, paying more attention to the figures and their contours.
But the technique and texture of this painting fade into the background compared to the characters depicted by the artist. One woman yawns, throwing her head back, while it is clear that her back and arms hurt unbearably from constant tension. The other looks full of hopelessness and continues her routine work, not paying attention to her colleague.
The usual heroes of Edgar Degas’s paintings are the bohemian aristocracy and the creative intelligentsia, but here we see the artist from a completely different side, here he appears before us as a realist artist and a great humanist, showing us the other side of Parisian brilliant metropolitan life, sometimes hidden from the gaze of an outside observer luxury and chic restaurants, theaters and palaces.
Year of painting: 1884.
Painting dimensions: no data.
Writing technique: oil.
Genre: genre painting.
Gallery: Musée d’Orsay, Paris, France.