Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Nude Before a Mirror

Artist:
Balthus (Balthasar Klossowski) (French, Paris 1908–2001 Rossinière)
Date:
1955
Medium:
Oil on canvas
Dimensions:
75 x 64.5 in. (190.5 x 163.8 cm)
Classification:
Paintings
Credit Line:
Robert Lehman Collection, 1975
Accession Number:
1975.1.155
Rights and Reproduction:
© 2016 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 913
For Balthus, the female sitter was a lifelong subject— whether daydreaming, reclining, or sleeping, often nude or partly clothed, and typically charged with erotic content. Nude Before a Mirror is striking for the sculptural monumentality of the model and the soft, silvery light that bathes the figure and fills the room. The model’s hieratic pose evokes figures in an ancient Egyptian frieze.
Signature: Signed and dated (lower right, on the baseboard): Balthus 1955
Pierre Matisse Gallery, New York; acquired from the Pierre Matisse Gallery, New York, by Robert Lehman, New York, December 1958.
William S. Lieberman in 20th Century Art: Selections from the Collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Vol. 2, Painting: 1945–1985. New York, 1986, p. 6.

Sabine Rewald in 20th Century Art: Selections from the Collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Vol. 2, Painting: 1945–1985. New York, 1986, pp. 34–35, ill. (color, overall and detail).



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