Seated Male Nude (Self-Portrait)

Egon Schiele1910

Leopold Museum

Leopold Museum
Vienna, Austria

This provocative self-portrait of Egon Schiele is one of five large nude paintings, which the artist created in 1910 at the age of twenty. Seated Male Nude (Self-Portrait) is the only surviving work in the series, as all other paintings were lost and are only preserved in black-and-white photos. The painting represents Schiele’s first grand work in which he manifests his novel and radically expressionistic pictorial approach. Set within a square, the haggard body, with ist unnatural yellow complexion and extreme posture, has an appearance that is most disturbing. The sharpness of the contours and the blank background combine to heighten the portrait’s effect and present to the viewer a well-thought-out composition. The straddled legs emanate from the bent hips and pillared upper body, whereas the head tilts in the opposite direction. Even the gesture of the upward folded arms adds a carefully considered compositional touch that aims to structure the top of the picture as a strict rectangle. In this way, the expressive and constructive features of the image are compellingly interconnected.


  • Title: Seated Male Nude (Self-Portrait)
  • Creator: Egon Schiele
  • Creator Lifespan: Tulln 1890 - 1918 Vienna
  • Creator Nationality: Austrian
  • Creator Gender: Male
  • Creator Death Place: Vienna
  • Creator Birth Place: Tulln
  • Date Created: 1910
  • Physical Dimensions: w1500 x h1525 cm (Without Frame)
  • Type: Paintings
  • Rights: Leopold Museum, Vienna
  • External Link: Leopold Museum, Vienna
  • Technique: Oil and opaque color on canvas
  • Inv. no.: LM 465

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