Portrait of a Young Woman (1909) by Umberto Boccioni

Portrait of a Young Woman - Umberto Boccioni - 1909

Artwork Information

TitlePortrait of a Young Woman
ArtistUmberto Boccioni
MediumPastel on Paper
Dimensions21 1/4 x 22 7/8 in (54 x 58.1 cm)
Art MovementDivisionism
Current LocationGalleria Internazionale d'Arte Moderna
Location Created Milan, Italy

About Portrait of a Young Woman

“Portrait of a Young Woman” is an artwork by Umberto Boccioni, created in 1909 using pastel on paper. The piece measures 21 1/4 by 22 7/8 inches (54 x 58.1 cm) and is a portrait, a prominent genre in art depicting an individual. The artwork demonstrates the influence of Divisionism, an art movement characterized by the separation of colors into individual dots or patches which interact optically. This artwork is housed at the Galleria Internazionale d’Arte Moderna and was created in Milan, Italy.

The artwork captures a young woman with a gentle expression, seemingly engaged in an activity before her. The pastel medium has allowed Boccioni to layer colors vibrantly, with strokes that provide both texture and luminosity. Her features are softly delineated, revealing an intimate connection with the viewer. Behind her, the setting is abstracted, with brush strokes suggesting a room that extends into space, complementing the central figure. The delicate play of light and shadow enhances the three-dimensional effect, demonstrating Boccioni’s skill in creating depth through color and tone rather than distinct line work, typical of the Divisionist style. The background seems to hold elements of domesticity, perhaps a window looking out into a brighter, external space, allowing the viewer to contemplate the juxtaposition of the interior world of the subject and the world beyond.

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