The painting entitled "Le Faux Depart (The False Start, 1871) by Impressionst painter Edgar Degas, shows a horse galloping prematurely onto the track while, in the background, a jockey is having the greatest difficulty keeping his horse under control. A false start at Longchamps, the popular Parisian racetrack In around the middle of the 19th century, horse racing became very popular in France. Degas discovered the sport during a holiday in Normandy. Originally he painted and drew hunting and steeplechase scenes but, in around 1870, he became a frequent visitor to the popular Longchamps racetrack on the outskirts of Paris. Just as he had an eye at the opera for the world of dancers and singers behind the screens, Degas also showed the jockeys and horses before and after the race.
Although the horse is beautifully painted, Degas made the mistake of portraying the horse's legs as being raised off the ground. Eight years later, Eadweard Muybridge would show, in his famous series of photos of a galloping horse, that Degas' painting does not match up with reality.
EDGAR DEGAS (1834-1917)
Together with Monet the founder of French Impressionism, Edgar Degas was famous for his innovative compositions in his paintings and later in his sculptures. Degas created a tremendous amount of artworks. For an example, just with his ballerina images and sculptures, the surviving artworks total more than 1,500 plus in various stages of development (sketches, prints, monotypes, paintings, drawings and sculptures). For 10 years he sketched the young women training and then reused the sketches for new artworks during the next 40 years. The early rehearsal scenes were done in oil; and in 1878, he started using pastels for his dancers, nudes and horse-track scenes.
Size: 6 in. x 9 in. x 2 in.
Item Type: statue
Material: bonded stone
Weight (lbs): 1.2