Edgar Degas Quotes

Famous Artist Quotes about Art and Life

Edgar Degas was a French artist who was born in Paris in 1834. He is best known for his paintings, sculptures, and drawings of dancers and ballerinas.

A prolific painter, Degas is considered one of the founders of Impressionism.

He is estimated to have produced over 1500 artworks during his lifetime. Degas was also known for his quotes, and here I have made a collection of just a few.

The posters and products have been designed by me, Gerard Fay.

art is not what you see
art is not what you see

20 quotes from
the famous French Impressionist, Painter & Sculptor, Edgar Degas
With a choice of artworks.

This post also contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my link.

Wall Art Quotes

Choose from these Well-known Degas Quotes

“Art is not what you see, but what you make others see.”

“Muses work all day long and then at night get together and dance.”

“A painting requires a little mystery, some vagueness, and some fantasy.”

“I assure you no art was ever less spontaneous than mine.

I am a colorist with line.”

“One sees what one wants to see. It is false, and that falsity is the foundation of art.”

“You must aim high, not in what you are going to do at some future date, but in what you are going to make yourself do today. Otherwise working is just a waste of time.”

“If I could have had my own way, I would have confined myself to black and white.”

“Do it again, ten times, a hundred times. Nothing in art must seem to be an accident, not even movement.”

“People call me the painter of dancing girls. It has never occurred to them that my chief interest in dancers lies in rendering movement and painting pretty clothes.”

“I should like to be famous and unknown.”

“Beauty is a mystery, but no one knows it anymore. The recipes, the secrets are forgotten.”

“There is a kind of success that is indistinguishable from panic.”

“We are living in a strange era, it must be admitted. This oil painting that we undertake, this very difficult craft that we practice without understanding it!”

“One certainly needs courage if one is to approach nature.

New things capture your fancy and bore you by turns.”

“I am thirsting for order.”

“I have done so many of these dance examinations without having seen them that I am a little ashamed of it.”

“There is a kind of shame in being known especially by people who don’t understand you. A great reputation is therefore a kind of shame.”

“Only when he no longer knows what he is doing does the painter do good things.”

Choose Your Quote, Select the Artwork Title, then Download Instantly.

300 dpi Resolution. Print from your Desktop or take the PDF/JPEG File to your Local Quality Print Shop.


Gallery-grade prints on high-quality lightly textured 100% cotton paper.


Exhibition-quality prints and framing. Choose from four high-quality timber finishes.


Available in several colors and sizes. Go to Redbubble to see more.


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His Life and Works in 500 Images

An illustrated exploration of the artist, his life and context with a gallery of 300 of his finest paintings and sculptures.


Hardcover Price Correct as of August 15th, 2022

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