Edgar Degas, secret sculptor
Edgar Degas is primarily known for his painting, having exhibited only one sculpture during his lifetime: The Little Fourteen-Year-Old Dancer, shown in the sixth Impressionist exhibition in Paris in 1881. It was not until after his death in 1917 that more than 150 pieces of sculpture of dancers, horses, and nudes, mostly made of wax, clay, and plastiline (a type of modeling clay), were discovered in his studio (read the intriguing story of the posthumous castings on the Metropolitan Museum of Art website).
Among hundreds of images of Degas’ paintings, works on paper, and sculptures, the Artstor Digital Library includes a selection of fascinating photographs by Gauthier from 1917-1918 of the original uncast sculptures in the Réunion des Musées Nationaux collection. Search the Digital Library for Degas and Gauthier to see all three dozen images.