Art: Ballet Backstage

For half a century the towering ghost of Edgar Degas, famed 19th-Century French painter of ballerinas, has kept serious artists away from the subject of ballet dancers. But gifted Gladys Rockmore Davis, No. 1 U.S. woman painter of women, is not afraid of ghosts. Last week a display of her work appeared in LIFE. This week, in Manhattan's Midtown Galleries, Painter Davis exhibited Ballet Backstage, 20 small, dramatically colored canvases conceived in the drafty wings and over-perfumed dressing rooms of the Metropolitan Opera House, during performances of the Ballet Theater Co.

Gladys Davis' backstage scenes were dashing, sensuous records of...

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