Standing Nude Girl

Oskar Kokoschka

Pöchlarn/Donau 1886 - 1980 Villeneuve/Genfersee

Standing Nude Girl

Reed pen, gouache and watercolour on paper

68 x 51.5 cm

This drawing will be included in the second part of the catalogue raisonné “Weidinger/Strobl, Kokoschka. Die Zeichnungen und Aquarelle”.


cf. Exhibition catalogue “Kokoschka und Dresden”, Albertinum, Dresden 1996 and Oberes Belvedere, Vienna 1997, ill. p. 178, cat. no. 75 and 77

Kokoschka’s Dresden years, initially as a convalescent following a war injury in the sanatorium in Dresden’s Weißer Hirsch district (December 1916 to autumn 1919), then as a professor at the Dresden Art Academy (with many breaks due to trips abroad up until May 1923), mark a tremendously productive period in artistic terms. Alongside the Elbe
landscapes of Dresden and large portraits and figure paintings, works of brilliant luminosity, particularly Kokoschka’s drawings of those years signalise a masterly artistic directness and freedom. Within the Dresden graphic œuvre, two large groups can be distinguished here: portrait drawings, on the one hand, mostly carried out with black chalk, and ink drawings on the other, which conjure up the elementary power of the line as a contour, as an interior drawing, an expressive value. The dynamic, rapid, intrinsically powerful lines of the reed pen drawings of the Dresden years, which left little room for alternatives, are proof of these as a high point in Kokoschka’s entire work as a draftsman. The
artist’s interest was focused mainly on the portrait and the figure, the human being per se, released from the banality of the moment. In the series of movement studies based on children drawn with the reed pen, special status is accorded to those sheets, moreover, that are also in watercolours: our mixed technique of a standing girl nude, which can
be dated around 1921, is revealed to be a significant example of this section that is very small in number. From March 17 to September 3, 2023, the Guggenheim Museum
Bilbao presented a Kokoschka retrospective, before that it was shown at the Musée d’Art Moderne de Paris.