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Portrait of a Woman by Egon Schiele

Portrait of a Woman, 1910

Egon Schiele

Although she’s clothed, this figure confronts the viewer with a frank, come-hither stare. Her pose, with tilted head and arms protectively clasped in front of her chest, seems to communicate demure coquettishness, but her full lips and heavy-lashed eyes, with their direct gaze, suggest a mature sexual power. The androgyny of her lanky elongated torso and long, skeletal arms combined with her schoolgirl hairstyle only add to her allure. The artist was known for portraits that, like this one, convey emotional and sexual directness, using figural distortion in place of conventional notions of beauty.

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Credit
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York