Little Dancer Aged Fourteen: The True Story Behind Degas's Masterpiece

Little Dancer Aged Fourteen: The True Story Behind Degas's Masterpiece

This absorbing, heartfelt work uncovers the story of the real dancer behind Degas's now-iconic sculpture, and the struggles of late nineteenth-century Parisian life. She is famous throughout the world, but how many know her name? You can admire her figure in Washington, Paris, London, New York, Dresden, or Copenhagen, but where is her grave? We know only her age, fourteen This absorbing, heartfelt work uncovers the story of the real dancer behind Degas's now-iconic sculpture, and the str...

DownloadRead Online
Title:Little Dancer Aged Fourteen: The True Story Behind Degas's Masterpiece
Author:Camille Laurens
Rating:
Genres:Nonfiction
ISBN:1590519582
Format Type:Hardcover
Number of Pages:176 pages pages

Little Dancer Aged Fourteen: The True Story Behind Degas's Masterpiece Reviews

  • Jamie
    Aug 07, 2018
    Really more of a lengthy essay than a biography of the dancer. Interesting about the nature of art both then and now, with a lot to think about in terms of class that feels contemporary (not in a good way) ...
  • Laurie
    May 17, 2019
    I had anticipated that this would contain historical content about the creation of Degas' ballerina sculpture "Little Dancer Aged Fourteen." However, this book seemed stretched out and more like an essay or diary entry. There was a great deal of analysis, guessing and jumping to conclu...
  • Julie
    Dec 19, 2018
    Fascinating look, both at Degas, and at the culture behind the young ballet dancers of the time. ...
  • Ann OConnell
    Jan 23, 2019
    To much unimportant detail, more of a non fiction historiography. Lots of details about the life of the poor young dancers. ...
  • Liz
    Apr 24, 2019
    A remarkable book detailing the author's fascination with one piece of art but which really takes a look at how we view and relate to art in general. Again, writing a longer review for MadReads, and will post the link later. ...
  • Diane S ☔
    Jan 01, 2019
    It was on an eighth grade school trip to the Chicago Art museum when I fell in love with the paintings of Degas. His painitings of ballerinas fascinated me, at that time I thought the life of a ballerina was one of elegance and grace. Of course, now I know it also includes a great deal...
  • Ann
    Apr 23, 2018
    I began thinking it was an imagination of the life of the model. I found, rather, a careful and thoughtful thesis delving into the relationships of artist, model, and sculpture. We meet Marie and Degas in their parallel lives and their respective roles in society. That sounds very acad...
  • Melissa
    Mar 16, 2019
    3.5 stars Unexpectedly moving. ...
  • Elizabeth (Literary Hoarders)
    Feb 06, 2019
    Before this book, my knowledge of Degas and "Little Dancer Aged Fourteen" was limited to brief moments of admiration. This is certainly no longer the case! This book provides an excellent study of both subjects, and I would recommend it to anyone who's fascinated by art and art history...
  • Lizzy
    Mar 06, 2019
    Fascinating history of the time. I didn't love it just because it's not my typical genre, but the ballet and artists of the time, especially in Paris, have always interested me. ...
  • Jen Blair
    Mar 26, 2019
    I reviewed this one in the Spring 2019 issue of World Lit Today: ?This journey through artists? studios and ballet slippers also presents the unsettling task of removing our icons from pedestals yet still appreciating them. Moments where it?s deeply enriching to admire Degas?...
  • Msimone
    Jan 16, 2019
    Before reading this book, I thought of Degas as an impressionist who captured the technique of dancers and their glamorous world of the Paris Opera in the 19th century. Degas frequently depicted ballet dancers at class, on stage, or among their demi-monde patrons. I now see the ralis...
  • Daniel
    Mar 18, 2019
    The book is rather oriented towards the writer's empathy towards the model rather than the sculpture itself. It is endearing to attest how warming a masterpiece can still be, but don't be mislead into thinking the complete mystery surrounding the model will be unveiled either, although...
  • Caterina Pierre
    Feb 05, 2019
    This is a literary musing on the famous sculpture by Edgar Degas, Little Dancer Fourteen Years Old, in the vein of Eunice Lipton?s book on the model for Manet?s Olympia. The reader will not learn much about Marie Van Goethem, the model who posed for the sculpture, and the art histo...
  • John Daler
    Feb 05, 2019
    Whorls of thought. Degas, Marie van Goethem and finally, Camille Laurens herself. Expressive and though meticulous. If you love the little dancer, you will love Laurens? book. ...
  • Roberta
    Feb 11, 2019
    What an interesting book! I discovered so many things about Degas, his work and the young girl who was the model for his statue of The Little Dancer. Incites to the ballet school in Paris during the 1880s and beyond. The author lets us see the side of Paris that is not often explored. ...
  • Sharon Banitt
    May 15, 2019
    An interesting story of Degas and his dancers. In the nineteenth century these young dancers were called "rats" and used and abused. A sad time for these poverty stricken girls who were overused and misused by men. They were paid minimally by the Paris Opera and some by artists like De...
  • Wendy
    May 03, 2019
    As a former dancer and fine art major -- I couldn't wait to read this. It's not an easy read. Laurens puts the sculpture in the social context of the time, which all in all is fairly grim. These young girls would dance often as a prelude to a shady future. Often, it was one of multiple...
  • Julia
    Mar 08, 2019
    Honestly, I could sum up all of the actual historical information about Marie Van Goethem presented in this book in one paragraph. I can't decide whether reading this felt like reading a class-assigned essay that had an excessively large word count (so the student just prattled on ...
  • Andrea Engle
    May 09, 2019
    A ?biography,? of sorts, for the model behind Edgar Degas? wax sculpture, ?Little Dancer, Aged Fourteen.? ... Cast into twenty-two bronze copies by the family after Degas? death, the artwork is familiar to museum-goers the world over ... a peek into the realities of working...
  • Paulette Illmann
    Dec 29, 2018
    Having read the historical fiction The Painted Girls, when I saw Little Dancer Aged Fourteen on the shelf at my local library, I couldn't resist. So little is known of the girl who posed for the famous statue by Degas, the book is a mere 147 pages, most of it trying to piece together w...
  • Rosemary
    Feb 03, 2019
    Interesting background about the model for Degas? famous sculpture, though sometimes read more like a thesis on the artist. The author brought in a more personal perspective in the final chapter as well as the most information about the model, both of which I enjoyed. ...
  • Caleb Hoyer
    Feb 26, 2019
    There is some interesting information about Marie van Goethem and the famous sculpture that Degas modeled after her in this book. Unfortunately, there?s only about 4 paragraph?s worth of it, and the book, though short, is over 140 pages. Aside from the few nuggets of actual informa...
  • Catherine
    Jan 02, 2019
    The last book I read in 2018. Not sure that this is the true story behind Degas' masterpiece so much as part of the true story but it was interesting & I learning some things & although the book was a little draggy in parts it got better & was worth finishing & was over...
  • Cat
    Oct 16, 2018
    I enjoy works by Degas! Receiving this book was a real joy!This short read is a bio on Marie Genevieve van Goethem, who modeled for Degas to earn extra money. She was a young dancer for the Paris Opera, but did not advance very far in the profession. It didn't pay very well either. The...
  • Erin Simone
    Dec 27, 2018
    "The sculpture allows the emptiness around her to be suggested: no scenery, no company. You walk around a sculpture, taking it in from all sides the way you might examine a question from every angle. The 'little Nana' stands against a backdrop of nothingness." p. 38 ...
  • Marie
    Aug 07, 2018
    I received an uncorrected ARC in exchange for an honest review. Rating: 3.8 / 5 In Little Dancer Aged Fourteen: The True Story Behind Degas's Masterpiece, Camille Laurens explores the story behind the girl who posed for Edgar Degas? famous Little Dancer sculpture. We learn her na...
  • Cindie
    Feb 21, 2019
    Way too textbook like for me. The author kept saying she did not want to fictionalize the little girl, instead she attempted to make the reader feel sorry for her. Not a good read and way off the mark as far as making me want to feel anything for the situation the girl was living in. ...
  • Sandrine D’Angelo
    Dec 26, 2018
    ...
  • Kathleen Kuritz
    Jan 22, 2019
    Important book. Beautifully written and translated. ...