Zwei Figuren: Erste Fassung (Two Figures: First Version)

© the artist's estate. Image credit: Ben Uri Collection

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Neuschul executed two versions of this double portrait of two women, one draped and one nude. Although known as a leading exponent of Neue Sachlichkeit (New Objectivity), this work is also reminiscent of Picasso's approach to his double nude La Toilette (1906, Buffalo AKG Art Museum), showing two sides – the sensual and the modest – of the same model. In the second version, style and handler are looser and the palette more subdued. The models are the artist’s lifetime companions and models, (left) Didi, who found a sponsor for Ernest in Wales, enabling the family to escape from Czechoslovakia in March 1939, and (right) Ruth, also a lifelong friend.

Ben Uri Gallery & Museum



Zwei Figuren: Erste Fassung (Two Figures: First Version)




oil on canvas


H 81 x W 60.5 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

presented by the Estate of Ernest Neuschul, 2023

Work type


Signature/marks description

Signed (lower right): EN


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Ben Uri Gallery & Museum

108a Boundary Road, St John's Wood, London, Greater London NW8 0RH England

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