Wilhelm Lehmbruck's Standing Woman Paper

Wilhelm Lehmbruck's Standing Woman Paper - r The Bronze...

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r The Bronze Beauty Walking in Gallery 215, one's eye is immediately drawn to the strong, bronze figure of an elegant woman. Looking closer, the woman is identified as Wilhelm Lehmbruck's Standing Woman , cast in the late 19th century. The bronze, almost nude female figure easily captures an audience within the room. She is larger than life, towering over the average human being. Standing next to the figure, most of us must look up to see her face. Even then, she is looking down with half closed eyes into the distance, making it difficult to connect and make eye contact with the viewer. In order to make eye contact, one would have to sit or kneel on the ground. The viewer feels small next to the statue. While the normal proportion of the human body is 1:7, Standing Woman is closer to 1:8. Her slightly elongated figure calls back to Classical antiquity and even Gothic architecture. Her voluptuous figure bears resemblance to the Classical Greek sculpture, Aphrodite of Knidos . Both female figures are half heartedly concealing their nudity, making themselves more provocative and sensual in doing so. Moreover, both figures have idealized, desirable bodies. Standing Woman gives off a quiet power and sense of elegance as well as calm. She makes the audience want to look closer and understand more. Though bronze is a hard material, Lehmbruck is able to manipulate it so that the bronze looks as if it is soft flesh. The smooth and supple quality of the figure makes the viewer forget the true character of the material. The woman is sensuous and organic, characteristics opposite of bronze. Bronze is also reflective, especially under the bright museum lights. The light particularly highlights the woman's face, right forearm, stomach and chest. And since bronze is so dark, the light contrasts deeply and really enhances select areas to the eye. However, the lighting is decided by the museum curator so it may not be how Lehmbruck originally wanted. In a museum, lighting can be easily transposed. Standing Woman is also inside, whereas the artists
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may have wanted her outside under natural light. Another important quality of bronze is that it is
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  • Spring '14
  • Klein
  • Human Body, Female body shape, Classical antiquity, Wilhelm Lehmbruck, Standing Woman

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