Head of a Woman
Amedeo Modigliani, Italian, 1884 - 1920
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Though widely recognized for his painted portraits of women with elongated features, Modigliani equally considered himself to be a sculptor of the first rank. He created around two dozen stone sculptures between 1909 and 1915, utilizing the direct carving techniques he had learned in Paris from the Romanian-born sculptor Constantin Brancusi. This bust of a woman's head displays a stylized, modern interpretation of non-Western art--especially Cycladic and Egyptian statuary--also referenced in the artist's oil compositions. Modigliani found sculpture to be a prohibitively expensive and physically demanding process, which explains why he did not produce more three-dimensional works in his short lifetime.