LIPCHITZ, Ossip/Jacques

Druskieniki, Lithuania 1891 - Capri, Italy 1973

Figure assise

Seated Figure




Dimensions (HxWxD): 45 x 13 x 14 in.

on the base : 6/7 JLipchitz

Acc. No.: 71.2013

Credit Line: Gift of Walter P. Chrysler, Jr.

Photo credit: Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk


  • 1968, July 26, New York, Jeffrey H. Loria
  • Walter P. Chrysler, Jr.
  • 1968, July 26, Chrysler Art Museum of Provincetown
  • 1971, Gift of Walter P. Chrysler, Jr. to the Chrysler Museum


  • Museum's website, 1 April 2015
  • 1973 Chrysler
    Chrysler Museum, "Jacques Lipchitz," Chrysler Museum at Norfolk, Vol. 2, no. 5, Norfolk: Chrysler Museum. 07/1973
  • 1975 Anderson
    Dennis R. Anderson, A Norfolk Bicentennial Salute: 300 Years of American Art at Norfolk's Chrysler Museum, Norfolk, VA: Chrysler Museum, 1975, p. 198
  • 1981 Steadman
    David W. Steadman, Large or Small, Bronze or Wood, Painted or Plain: Problems and Solutions in Sculpture, The Chrysler Museum, Norfolk, VA, 1981, #13
  • 1982 [Norfolk]
    The Chrysler Museum. Selections from the permanent collection, Norfolk, Virginia, Norfolk, The Chrysler Museum, 1982, p. 68, repr.
  • 1991 [Norfolk]
    Jefferson C. Harrison, The Chrysler Museum. Handbook of the European and American Collections. Selected Paintings, Sculpture and Drawings, Norfolk, The Chrysler Museum, 1991, p. 172, no. 130, repr.


  • 1976 Norfolk
    Three Hundred Years of American Art in the Chrysler Museum, Norfolk, Chrysler Museum at Norfolk, March 1 - July 4, 1976

    1981 Norfolk
    Problems and Solutions in Sculpture, Norfolk, The Chrysler Museum, July 9 - Sept. 13, 1981 (Exhib. cat. no. 13)


  • Museum's website, Catalogue Entry, 1 April 2015:
    Jefferson C. Harrison. The Chrysler Museum Handbook of the European and American Collections: Selected Paintings, Sculpture and Drawings. The Chrysler Museum, 1991, p. 172, #130:
    Jacques Lipchitz arrived in Paris in 1909 from his native Lithuania to pursue the art of sculpture. He studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts and Académie Julian and during the first years of his Paris career produced rather traditional, naturalistic figure sculptures that bear the imprint of both classical prototypes and Art Nouveau. By 1914 Lipchitz had joined the Cubist avant-garde centered around Picasso. He rapidly abandoned all vestiges of his former realism and by 1916 evolved a severely geometric, semi-abstract style, a cool, reflective formal approach based on the tenets of Synthetic Cubism. Like the 1916 bronze Seated Figure, many of Lipchitz's Cubist works from this period interpret the human form in decidedly vertical terms, as towering arrangements of sleek, rectangular planes. Bolstered by his friendship with Juan Gris, Lipchitz sustained his Cubist researches well into the 1920s, creating an oeuvre that constitutes one of the fullest and purest expressions of sculpture in the Cubist mode. After 1925, however, he abandoned Cubism for a far more passionate and curvilinear art, a dramatic "baroque" style that took its inspiration from Auguste Rodin (no. 105). Seated Figure, which exists in both stone and bronze replicas, reveals the Cubist Lipchitz at his most intellectual and austere. A seated human form - its head, eye, torso and legs are clearly articulated - has been reduced to a semiabstract ion of simple, geometric shapes, an elegant bundle of vertical shafts fused together with tight, geometric logic. The coexistence of multiple viewpoints exemplifies the Cubists' effort to present a figure or object as though it were being seem simultaneously from 360 degrees. Lipchitz's Cubism was influenced by the tribal art of Africa and the Pacific islands, and Seated Figure possesses something of the mystery and power of a primitive Oceanic totem.
    Museum's website, Object Label, 1 April 2015:
    Lipchitz was classically trained in the art of naturalistic figure sculpture, but by 1914 he abandoned realism for the avant-garde abstraction of Cubism. He went on to produce some of the purest and most intellectual sculptural expression of this reductive style. Dating from Lipchitz's initial Cubist period, this austere piece presents the human form in decidedly vertical terms. He reinterprets parts of the body as planar geometric shapes that are stacked and fused into a tower of sleek rectangular forms. In Seated Figure the head and torso are clearly articulated, yet following the tenets of Cubism, Lipchitz tries to convey the multiple viewpoints simultaneously. Lipchitz's style was influenced by the tribal art of Africa and the Pacific Islands, and Seated Figure possesses something of the mystery and power of an ancient Oceanic totem.