Young woman dressed in Empire style
  • Franz Skarbina
  • Berlin 1849 - 1910
  • Young woman dressed in Empire style
  • Watercolour on white cardboard
  • signed with brush on the lower right: F. Skarbina
  • 269 × 169 mm

The Portrait of a Young Woman in an Empire-Period Dress likewise symbolizes this mood of tired decadence before the turn of the century, the same period in which the Rococo underwent a Renaissance. Wearing a ruffled robe and entranced in an almost melancholy reverie, the young woman seems to want to hide in a corner of the room yet presents herself as though she were on a stage. Here the violet iridescence of her white dress echoes the curtain-like drapery on the left side of the image, and the red bands that keep her luscious curls in place find their colouristic resonance in the red sash of her dress. Delicate colour contrasts further present themselves in her long, orange-tinted gloves as well as in her extravagant green shoes. Skarbina once again distinguishes himself here as a sophisticated colourist, concerning himself primarily with the painterly effect of his portrait and costume studies even when he takes specific characteristics and accessories of contemporary fashion into particular consideration.