Artwork of the month January

Wilhelm Lehmbruck, Kleiner weiblicher Torso (Hagener Torso), 1910/11

Wilhelm Lehmbruck

* 1881 in Meiderich, † 1919 in Berlin

Kleiner weiblicher Torso (Hagener Torso), 1910/11

Cast stone

69,5 x 25,5 x 23,2 cm
LSK 00.33

Gift of the Ars Rhenia Foundation, Vaduz

The Kleiner weiblicher Torso (Little Female Torso), also known as the Hagener Torso, is a key work in the oeuvre of Wilhelm Lehmbruck, who was not only Germany's most important early 20th century sculptor, but also highly appreciated in Paris in his day. This work marks the artist's transition from the neoclassical sculpture of his teachers in Düsseldorf to the development of a modern, formal vocabulary of his own. The rounded lines of the torso stand in contradiction to the nascent reduction in formal idiom of the head and neck. The technique of cast stone, though new and extremely modern, was held to be less "refined" .

The work demonstrates the interiorisation that accompanied Lehmbruck's attention to the sculpture of antiquity. The gently inclined head of the figure mirrors the still purely classical form of the torso but her demure, averted gaze clearly anticipates what was to become the artist's main concern: the feeling of being lost in the world. The courageous use of slender, elongated proportions gives inimitable and compelling expression to this feeling in the work of his later years.

<b>Wilhelm Lehmbruck, Kleiner weiblicher Torso (Hagener Torso), 1910/11</b>
Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein highlights a work from the permanent collection each month throughout the year. Works from the collection of the Hilti Art Foundation are also included in this series on a regular basis.