Study of a Male Nude (1885-1887)

This oil study of a nude is one of few works known from Mucha’s Munich period. Set against a dark background, a full-standing figure of a young man is depicted with careful, yet confident brushwork, highlighting the tones of the muscles and the youthful features of the model’s face. Contrasting with the subtle pale blue of his veins, the reddish brown and light salmon heightens the striking physical sensuality of the nude.

Judging from the model’s classical pose and the wooden wedge supporting his right foot, the painting was probably made as a routine piece of coursework at the Munich Academy. Nevertheless, this oil study shows Mucha’s competence in this medium as well as his solid ability to capture the human form.