The violent colours and broad brushstrokes seen in 'Head of a Woman' can be compared with paintings by Derain. Jawlensky's painting achieved maturity in 1911. He felt that his most powerful works were produced in the period up to 1914, when he was painting in strong colours with a 'tremendous inner ecstasy'. The majority of Jawlensky's works are portraits and heads of women, and, in a sense, he was continuing the great tradition of Russian icon painting. His later work became increasingly stylized, with the female head being reduced to a few schematic forms and lines.