Aug 13, 2020
Aug 13, 2020
Aug 13, 2020

The Laundresses

The Laundresses


Edgar Degas

(French, 1834–1917)

Etching and aquatint

Support: Beige wove paper

Image: 11.6 x 15.7 cm (4 9/16 x 6 3/16 in.); Sheet: 21 x 23.8 cm (8 1/4 x 9 3/8 in.)

Norman O. Stone and Ella A. Stone Memorial Fund 2020.223

Catalogue raisonné: Delteil 37; Reed and Shapiro 48

State: IV/IV

Did you know?

In addition to the needle traditionally used in etching, Edgar Degas employed unorthodox tools including a wire brush and a double-pointed steel accountant’s pen to make marks on the plate used for this print.


The Impressionist artist Edgar Degas explored etching briefly, from about 1875 through 1880. Created during this period, The Laundresses depicts several young women working at a Parisian laundry shop, hanging washed clothing and ironing. It is Degas’s only intaglio print that focused on laundresses, a popular subject in contemporary novels. Through the women’s hunched postures and the scale of the laundry pile at lower right, the artist emphasized the difficulty of such work.

See also
PR - Etching
Type of artwork: 

Contact us

The information about this object, including provenance, may not be currently accurate. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email

To request more information about this object, study images, or bibliography, contact the Ingalls Library Reference Desk.

All images and data available through Open Access can be downloaded for free. For images not available through Open Access, a detail image, or any image with a color bar, request a digital file from Image Services.