Axentowicz, Theodor / Girl in a fur
pastel, cardboard, 99 × 70 cm
posthumous estate donation in 2020
Theodor Axentowicz was a Polish-Armenian painter who was known mainly for his portraits and his depictions of the lives of the Hutsuls, an ethnic group that lived in the Carpathian region of what is now Romania and Ukraine. These include a pastel drawing that the gallery acquired as a posthumous donation in 2020. The piece shows Axentowicz’s skilled work with lines; as a portraitist first and foremost, his attention focuses on the face of the girl depicted in the work, and the jug she is holding is also brilliantly depicted. The background (including the standing male figures) is relatively sparsely depicted, and is clearly of secondary importance to the main figure. This pastel is the first work by Theodor Axentowicz to feature in the gallery’s collections.