Ballerina Misty Copeland Perfectly Recreates Famous Degas Paintings

If you’re not familiar with Misty Copeland, let us clue you in. She’s the 33-year-old ballerina who in 2015 became the first African American woman to be promoted to principal dancer in the prestigious American Ballet Theatre. She also made headlines as the star of Under Armour’s kick-ass “I Will What I Want” campaign last year, which is a must-see in case you missed it:

Having made it to the highest ranks of ballet as a dancer from an unlikely background (she once lived in a motel with her mother and siblings), she has been an inspiration to girls everywhere. And she continues to serve as muse to creatives in many fields, as her photoshoot in the March issue of Harper’s Bazaar proves.

In honor of the upcoming exhibit “Edgar Degas: A Strange New Beauty” at New York’s Museum of Modern Art, the magazine decided to have Copeland recreate the artist’s most famous paintings. Degas was infatuated with ballet dancers—both their form and costumes—making them the anchor of his lifelong work, so who better to give his work a modern twist than Copeland?

The images feature her in couture clothing, artfully (and challengingly, as she admits) posing to perfectly match the subjects in each painting. We’d say she nailed it.

Little Dancer Aged Fourteen


Photo: Ken Browar & Deborah Ory/Harper’s Bazaar

The Star


Photo: Ken Browar & Deborah Ory/Harper’s Bazaar



Photo: Ken Browar & Deborah Ory/Harper’s Bazaar

Swaying Dancer (Dancer in Green)

Photo: Ken Browar & Deborah Ory/Harper's Bazaar

Photo: Ken Browar & Deborah Ory/Harper’s Bazaar

For more, check out the behind-the-scenes video here:

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