Visit to a Museum by Hilaire-Germain-Edgar Degas
As shown in Visit to a Museum (c. 1879-80), Edgar Degas's bold compositional arrangements gave his work an immediacy that suggests the observations of a passing glance. In this pastel of two women in a gallery at the Louvre, the floor meets the wall at a raking angle, the bench is cut off at the right, and the standing woman's skirt trails out of the image at the left. It is as if these women -- Mary Cassatt and her sister -- will soon rise and move on to another gallery.
The next painting is a more traditional and formal portrait of another woman dear to the artist, his sister: Portrait of Thérèse Degas.