A youthful female ballet dancer is seen from the back as she stands in the center-right looking out of a floor to ceiling, light-drenched window. The sheer-covered whitish grey window establishes the short depth of the room and forms the entire background of the painting bisected by faintly seen shadows of the window frame, one running horizontally at waist height and the other vertically about a fourth of the way in from the right edge of the painting. The ballerina is dressed in a white, scooped-neck, sleeveless, knee-high, tulle tutu with soft pink ballet slippers tied with pink ribbons around her ankles. She stands on a pinkish-brown shallow floor in the Third Position - legs somewhat apart, her right foot out-turned and pointed, her left foot pointed straight ahead toward the window]. Her right arm rests akimbo on her hip; her left arm is flexed at her elbow so that her left thumb and index finger are almost touching her slightly turned face so that we see her in profile from the left. Her ski-slope, pointed nose is her only feature detailed although the light skin of her left ear contrasts with her dark brunette hair upsweep in what appears to be a loose bun. On the far left of the painting we see half of a wood chair with a light turquoise tutu thrown casually over the back. The colors are mostly soft, light-filled pastels. Outlines, except for her body parts and the form of the chair, tend to be blurred and brush strokes are often wide with strokes of built-up paint visible, overall giving an airy, ephemeral effect.
Isabella Stewart Gardner kept meticulous records of many of her acquisitions. In keeping with this legacy, object information is continually being reviewed, updated, and enriched in order to give greater access to the collection.