Studies of the Borghese Gladiator

Black and red chalk studies of a sculpture of a male figure

Edgar Degas (1834–1917) 
Studies of the Borghese Gladiator, c. 1853–56
Black and red chalks on cream laid paper 
9 1/2 x 12 5/16 in. (24.2 x 31.3 cm)
Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts, 1971.41

Underlying Degas’s prowess as a draftsman was a thorough academic training that included drawing after Old Master paintings and Greek and Roman sculpture in the Louvre. An example of this practice, this student work combines images of the celebrated antique marble gladiator, represented from different viewpoints, with the profile of the head of another sculpture.

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