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Seated Male Nude (Self-Portrait), 1910

Leopold Museum,
Oil, opaque color on canvas
152.5×150 cm


  • Egon Schiele

    (Tulln 1890–1918 Vienna)

Currently on display at OG3
In his equally radical and obsessive self-stagings, Egon Schiele (1890–1918) captures his body on canvas – occasionally evoking the idea of a dissecting table – and explores its gestures and facial expressions to the limits of anatomic possibilities. The painting Seated Male Nude (Self-Portrait) created in 1910 represents an early highlight in this development. The 20-year-old artist depicts himself in the nude, in an almost painful corporeality. The focus is not on the skin, thus not on the sensual surface of the body; instead, sinews, muscles and bones stand out, making the body appear almost skinned. Thrown onto the canvas with fragmented legs, the body finds no support in the thinly applied monochrome white of the background – it levitates in the placeless pictorial space with an expression of utmost vulnerability. Far removed from naturalistic colors, the yellow and green body forms a contrast to the eyes, nipples, navel and genitalia all marked in signal red. Schiele’s search for the ego, pursued in countless self-portraits, becomes a reflection on the quintessence of what it means to be human, with Eros and Thanatos as the main protagonists.

A closer look

The artwork explained by
Artistic Director Hans-Peter Wipplinger


Audio for adults

Object data

  • Egon Schiele
Seated Male Nude (Self-Portrait)
Art movement
Oil, opaque color on canvas
152.5×150 cm
Credit line
Leopold Museum, Vienna, Inv. 465
Inventory access
Contributed to the Leopold Museum-Privatstiftung in 1994
Selection of Reference works
  • Max Oppenheimer. Expressionist der ersten Stunde, hrsg. von Hans-Peter Wipplinger, Wien 2023 (Ausst.-Kat. Leopold Museum, Wien, 06.10.2023 –25.02.2024).
  • Rudolf Leopold: Egon Schiele. Gemälde, Aquarelle, Zeichnungen, hrsg. von Elisabeth Leopold, München 2020.
  • Wien 1900. Aufbruch in die Moderne, hrsg. von Hans-Peter Wipplinger, Wien 2019 (Ausst.-Kat. Leopold Museum, Wien, ab 15.03.2019).
  • Tobias Natter: Egon Schiele, Sämtliche Gemälde 1909-1918, Köln 2017.
  • nackte männer. von 1800 bis heute, hrsg. von Tobias G. Natter, München 2012 (Ausst.-Kat. Leopold Museum, Wien, 19.10.2012-28.01.2013).
  • Egon Schiele. Melancholie und Provokation, hrsg. von Elisabeth/Diethard Leopold, Wien 2011 (Ausst.-Kat. Leopold Museum, Wien, 23.09.2011–19.04.2012).
  • Die nackte Wahrheit. Klimt, Schiele, Kokoschka und andere Skandale, hrsg. von Tobias G. Natter/Max Hollein, München 2005 (Ausst.-Kat. Schirn Kunsthalle, Frankfurt, 28.01.2005-24.01.2005; Leopold Museum, Wien, 31.05.2005-22.08.2005).
  • Jane Kallir: Egon Schiele - The complete works. Expanded edition including a biography and a catalogue raisonné, New York 1998.
  • Otto Kallir: Egon Schiele. Oeuvre Catalogue of the Paintings, New York 1966.
  • Otto Nirenstein: Egon Schiele. Persönlichkeit und Werk, Berlin 1930.
Catalogue raisonne
  • J. Kallir 1990/1998: P172
  • Leopold 1972/2020: 145
  • Natter 2017: 24
  • O. Kallir 1966: 112
  • O. Kallir (Nirenstein) 1930: 59

If you have further information on this object, please contact us.


Provenance research
Leopold Museum i

Carl Reininghaus, Wien (1910-1929); (1)
Friedl (Friederike) Aigner, Wien (vor 1934-1954); (2)
Auktion: 16.-18.09.1954, Dorotheum Wien, Los Nr. 94a
Dr. Rudolf Leopold, Wien (1954-1994); (3)
Leopold Museum-Privatstiftung, Wien (1994).

  1. Tobias G. Natter, Die Welt von Klimt, Schiele und Kokoschka. Sammler und Mäzene, Köln 2003, S. 169; Christian M. Nebehay, Egon Schiele 1890 – 1918. Leben Briefe Gedichte, Salzburg und Wien 1979, S. 561.
  2. Michael Wladika, Egon Schiele. Sitzender Männerakt (Selbstdarstellung), Dossier vom 20.06.2010, S. 10.
  3. Diethard Leopold, Rudolf Leopold - Kunstsammler, Wien 2003, S. 17 f.

For provenance related information, please contact us.