A 12" x 9" reproduction of Edgar Degas' Woman With Chrysanthemums as a part of a late 1940s collection of the "World's Great Paintings" with title and commentary on reverse of the art print and in the description below.

EDGAR DEGAS (French School 1834-1917)

Quite aside from the universal appeal of his paintings, Degas has two points of sentimental interest for Americans. He was the master of one of our best artists-Mary Cassett. And he painted one of the best pictures of a purely American scene-The Cotton Market in New Orleans-in 1873, when he visited briefly the city of his Creole mother's birth where two of his brothers were prosperous bankers and cotton-brokers.

Degas Senior was a banker who approved of his son's determination to paint-just the right kind of father for an artist to have. A conservative at heart and a classicist by early training, Degas in his mid-thirties abandoned the painting of historical works and allied himself with the im-pressionists. Nevertheless, he shied away from impressionism in general and open air pictures in particular; at a show of Monet's he is said to have turned up his collar because so much out-of-doors painting made the room feel draughty.

Degas was interested in photography; he wanted to "observe his models through the keyhole." Unliterary, without sentiment or emotion, tough-minded, he held that "nothing in art should seem to be accidental, not even movement." He was interested in the pictorial possibilities of his ballet dancers and racehorses, laundresses and milliners and women rising from the bath, rather than in the picturesque or dramatic qualities of his subjects. His canvases, painted with unflinching realism, are studio productions, the result of infinite painstaking. Influenced by the formal perfections of the classic Japanese prints, and searching always the familiar for "the hidden sources of unfamiliar beauty," he was little concerned with character or associative interest. For Degas, the picture was the thing. Woman With Chrysanthemums may be seen at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.