Directed by David Bickerstaff (UK, 2018, 85 min.). Digital.

The Exhibition on Screen series journeys from the streets of Paris to the heart of a superb Degas exhibition at the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge, England. With exclusive access to rare and diverse works, the film tells a fascinating story of Degas’s pursuit for perfection through both experimentation with new techniques and lessons learnt from studying the past masters.

Sometimes frustrated by his own failings, Degas was consumed by obsessive principles and failing eyesight, but his determination to capture everyday life was evident in every mark he made. Never fully satisfied, Degas refused to share many of his drawings and sculptures during his lifetime, but they are widely considered some of the most beautifully detailed and expressive works in the modern era. Using written accounts by friends and commentators, as well as letters written by Degas himself, Passion for Perfection reveals a more complex truth behind one of the most influential French artists of the late 19th century.

Organized in conjunction with “French Pastels: Treasures from the Vault”, on view at the MFA through January 6, 2019.

Watch the trailer


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