Sleeping Nude by Gustave Courbet

Sleeping Nude - Gustave Courbet -

Artwork Information

TitleSleeping Nude
ArtistGustave Courbet
Dimensions45 x 54.5 cm
Art MovementRealism

About Sleeping Nude

The artwork “Sleeping Nude” is an oil on canvas by Gustave Courbet, a renowned artist associated with the Realism art movement. This piece is a nude painting (nu) with dimensions of 45 x 54.5 cm. The artwork portrays a woman in a state of repose, lying unadorned on a bed with her gaze turned away from the viewer, embodying the Realism movement’s emphasis on depicting everyday scenes and forms without idealization.

The woman’s body is rendered with a palpable sense of weight and volume, indicative of Courbet’s skillful handling of oil paint to achieve textural richness and nuanced shading. Her flesh tones are warm and naturalistic, contrasting with the cooler tones of the background and the rumpled fabrics upon which she reclines. The background hints at an interior setting with a glimpse of the outdoors through a window. The intricate play of light and shadow enhances the three-dimensionality of the figure and contributes to the overall feeling of tranquility and intimacy. Furthermore, the candid and unidealized representation of the figure reflects the Realist aim to capture subjects in their truest form, challenging the academic norms of the era.

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