Femme assise (Seated Woman) Artist: Pablo Picasso (Spanish, active France, 1881–1973)


Modern and Contemporary Art

On view, 3rd floor, Modern and Contemporary Art and Design

Pablo Picasso painted Femme assise after a one-year hiatus from painting, during which he turned to writing and penned more than one hundred poems. When he resumed painting in April 1936, he created a rapid succession of images inspired by his mistress, Marie-Thérèse Walter, including this work, which is marked by anatomic confusion and high-keyed color. Green-yellow sunlight burns through the window to the left of the figure, its garish brightness casting a deep purple shadow under her eye and down her cheek. To her right, Picasso inserted his own shadowy profile, overlapping this trace of his self with hers—though his profile faces away from the sun’s punishing glare.


Oil on canvas


28 3/4 × 23 1/2 in. (73.03 × 59.69 cm)
framed: 33 3/4 × 28 1/2 in. (85.73 × 72.39 cm)

Credit Line

Charles B. Benenson, B.A. 1933, Collection

Accession Number



20th century


Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of records is ongoing.



Pablo Picasso, until at least 1961. Charles B. Benenson, to 2006; Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Conn.
  • Cathleen Chaffee, Eye on a Century: Modern and Contemporary Art from the Charles B. Benenson Collection at the Yale University Art Gallery (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2012), 52–53, 175, no. 15
  • Susan Greenberg Fisher et al., Picasso and the Allure of Language, exh. cat. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2009), 8–9, 112, 125, 129–35, no. 16, ill
  • Art for Yale: Collecting for a New Century, exh. cat. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2007), 246, 400, pl. 234
  • "Acquisitions, July 1, 2006–June 30, 2007," in "Japanese Art at Yale," special issue, Yale University Art Gallery Bulletin (2007), 240, ill
Object copyright
Additional information

Object/Work type

abstract (general art genre), figures (representations)




Inscribed with the date 26 Avril XXXVI on the reverse and on the stretcher

Technical metadata and APIs


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