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Gesenkter Frauenkopf [Woman with Bowed Head]
© DACS 2015

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Gesenkter Frauenkopf [Woman with Bowed Head] 1905

Not on display

Kollwitz spoke of the 'gravity and tragedy of the most miserable kind of proletarian existence' visible in the appearance of the women who attended her husband's surgery. She bears witness to their suffering in this expressive head. Kollwitz made a number of drawings of heads, mainly of careworn, working-class women. She preferred to depict working-class subjects, since Kollwitz felt that they presented themselves openly and expressed themselves with no disguises. This etching shows the artist's skill in sculpting form out of light and shade. It is typical of the dignified manner in which Kollwitz treated her subjects.

Glossary Open


A form of printmaking in which a metal plate is covered with a substance called a 'ground', usually wax, into which an image is drawn with a needle. Acid is applied, eroding the areas of the plate exposed but not the areas covered by wax. The action of the acid creates lines in the metal plate that hold the ink from which a print is made when the plate is pressed against paper under pressure.



  • Acc. No. GMA 2096
  • Medium Soft-ground etching on paper
  • Size 37.60 x 31.70 cm (paper 60.00 x 44.90 cm)
  • Credit Purchased 1979