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Hélène: M.11-1931

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Object information

Current Location: Gallery 4




Sculptor: Epstein, Jacob




Bronze. Hair is parted in the centre with a bun at back; a low cut dress, off the shoulders, and both arms to the elbow; the hands clasped in front of the left breast are detached. The head is bent forward and tilted slightly to the left.

no. 1 of an edition of 3, with later additional casts know

Legal notes

Given by A.E. Anderson

Measurements and weight

Height: 53.4 cm

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Given (1931) by Anderson, A.E.


20th Century
George V
Production date: AD 1919


The model for this bust, Hélène, was of dual ethnic heritage and married to the musician W. Yellin. The half-smile, gentle expression and demure gesture of her hands clasped to her breast recall images of women made during the Italian Renaissance, and imbue the portrait with a calm spirituality and lyricism. Here, as in other post-War portraits, Epstein rejected the smooth geometric forms of earlier heads in favour of a roughly-modelled surface, which broke up the light. Although some critics deplored this 'mud-pie' effect, others hailed Epstein as 'the greatest modeller since Rodin'.

People, subjects and objects depicted


  • Sculpture UK

Materials used in production


Techniques used in production

Casting (process) : Bronze, cast and patinated

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: M.11-1931
Primary reference Number: 12312
External ID: CAM_CCF_M_11_1931
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Monday 18 December 2023 Last processed: Monday 18 December 2023

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Applied Arts

Citation for print

This record can be cited in the Harvard Bibliographic style using the text below:

The Fitzwilliam Museum (2024) "Hélène" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-03-03 04:00:19

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{{cite web|url= |title=Hélène |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2024-03-03 04:00:19|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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