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Egon Schiele

Woman in Profile, Seated in a Chair

pencil and coloured crayon on paper
1909
45,5 x 31,5 cm / 17 7/8 x 12 3/8 in.
signed and dated lower left

Schiele, who only lived to the age of 28, nonetheless created an extensive oeuvre. His drawings are mindful of old masters but still extremely modern. The pitiless depiction of the human figure - often naked - own a singular power. Promoted by Gustav Klimt, he had his breakthrough in March 1918, at the exhibition of the Vienna Secession. He became one of the many victims of the Spanish flu in October of the same year at the age of 28. The woman in the present drawing is wearing very modern, so-called “rational clothing“. The widely cut garments generally had straps, as here, so that different blouses could be worn beneath them. Women were finally able to cast off their corsets, which were recognised as being bad for their health. The purpose of such clothes was to allow women to move more freely and they wore just one petticoat beneath them, instead of many. The subject may well be Schiele’s mother Marie, whom he drew on several occasions in 1909 and whom he painted in "Bildnis der Mutter des Künstlers mit Pelzkragen" (Portrait of the artist's mother with fur collar). Provenance available

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