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“The Figure” by Jacques Lipchitz

"The Figure" by Jacques Lipchitz

“The Figure” by Jacques Lipchitz

“The Figure” by Jacques Lipchitz was inspired by the principles of Cubism. It was modelled between 1926-1930 and cast in bronze in 1958-1961. Lipchitz’s style incorporated biomorphic shapes which model artistic design elements of life. Biomorphic comes from combining the Greek words ‘bios’, meaning life, and ‘morphe’, meaning form and was introduced in the 1930s to describe the imagery in the abstract types of surrealist art.

Jacques Lipchitz was a Lithuanian Jewish sculptor, whose work was influenced by cubism. He lived and worked in France, USA, Israel and Italy. Lipchitz was absorbed by themes of love, motherhood, homeland, humanity and goodness and evil as depicted in the images of the Old Testament of Greek and Roman mythology.


Biomorphism models artistic design on shapes reminiscent of nature and living organisms. Biomorphic art focuses on the power of nature and uses organic forms. Contemporary architects have also explored biomorphism, such as the Sagrada Família church by Antoni Gaudí in Barcelona has many features inspired by nature, such as the internal columns shaped to reflect trees.


  • Do we need more Biomorphism or nature-inspired design elements in our modern architecture and industrial design?

The Figure

  • Title:          The Figure
  • Artist:        Jacques Lipchitz
  • Year:          Modelled 1926-1930; Cast 1958-1961
  • Material:    Bronze Casting
  • Museum:   Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden

Jacques Lipchitz

  • Name:        Jacques Lipchitz
  • Born:          Chaim Jacob Lipchitz
  • Lithuanian: Jacques Lipshits
  • Born:          1891 – Druskininkai,  Lithuania
  • Died:          1973 (81 years old) – Capri, Italy
  • Notable work


“I invent nothing, I rediscover.”
– Auguste Rodin


Photo Credit: By Cliff (Flickr: Figure) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0) or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons