This is my favorite room in The Philadelphia Museum of Art. It's a favorite because of some of the beautiful Impressionist landscapes in that room by Renoir, Monet and others. But mostly it's my favorite room because of The Little Ballerina, Aged 14, by Eduard Degas. I often get annoyed with Degas's paintings of dancers because I feel that he mis-represents their bodies and feet. But with the little dancer, he totally epitomized the perfect form for a ballet dancer to have.
As a former ballet company director, I would become very excited when I would find young dancers with forms like this. It meant that they would be able to dance professionally if they wanted to. So many girls work so hard to become wonderful dancers, only to find out that their body types are not appreciated in the professional world. Misty Copeland is an exception, and I admire her tremendously for her professional journey.
I snapped this photo one day and decided to paint it this week. I loved the juxtaposition of the old world paintings against the modern people admiring them. Harley Davidson sweatshirts, casual attire, cell phones- what would the Impressionists have thought?
Anyhow, if you are interested in this painting, just send me an email at email@example.com
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