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Bust Portrait of a Lady with Closed Eyes from the Right, Her Head Tilted Back. Study for The Virgin, 1911/12

Leopold Museum,
Pencil on Japanese paper
55.7×37 cm


  • Gustav Klimt

    (Baumgarten near Vienna/Vienna 1862–1918 Vienna)

Unfortunately not on display at the moment
While preparing his 1913 painting The Virgin, Gustav Klimt (1862–1918) created several individual face studies which Alice Strobl associated with the central figure in the painting. Two of these head studies are housed by the Leopold Museum – the present drawing and the Bust Portrait of a Lady in Profile from the Right with Closed Eyes. The precision with which Klimt captured the complex position of the tilted head in its three-dimensional effect with few, terse contours invests the drawing with a sculptural character. This distinctive head posture and the regular features of the model, with her eyes closed, clearly correspond to the traits of the central dreaming virgin in the executed painting.

Object data

  • Gustav Klimt
Bust Portrait of a Lady with Closed Eyes from the Right, Her Head Tilted Back. Study for The Virgin
Art movement
Art Nouveau, Symbolism
Graphic work
Pencil on Japanese paper
55.7×37 cm
Credit line
Leopold Museum, Vienna, Inv. 1337
Inventory access
Contributed to the Leopold Museum-Privatstiftung in 1994
Selection of Reference works
  • Gustav Klimt. Jahrhundertkünstler, hrsg. von Hans-Peter Wipplinger/Sandra Tretter, Wien 2018 (Ausst.-Kat. Leopold Museum, Wien, 22.06.2018–04.11.2018).
  • Gustav Klimt. Die Sammlung im Leopold Museum, hrsg. von Tobias G. Natter/Elisabeth Leopold, Ostfildern 2013 (Bestandskatalog des Leopold Museum: Band 1).
  • Alice Strobl: Gustav Klimt. Die Zeichnungen 1912-1918, Salzburg 1984.
Catalogue raisonne
  • Strobl Bd. 3/1984: 2290

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Provenance research
Leopold Museum i

Unbekannter Schweizer Privatbesitz (o.D.);
Auktion: 13.-15.6.1974, Galerie Kornfeld und Klipstein, Bern, 152. Auktion, Los Nr. 523
Unbekannter Schweizer Privatbesitz (1974-1978);
Auktion: 07.-08.06.1978, Galerie Kornfeld und Klipstein, Bern, 165. Auktion, Los Nr. 492 (Tafel 46)
Dr. Rudolf Leopold, Wien (1978-1994); (1)
Leopold Museum-Privatstiftung, Wien (1994).

  1. Sonja Niederacher, Gustav Klimt. Brustbild einer Dame mit geschlossenen Augen nach rechts, Kopf in den Nacken gelegt. Studie zu „Die Jungfrau“, 1911/12. Dossier vom 31.01.2017.

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