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In 1913 Gaudier-Brzeska became involved with the artists and writers who formed the Vorticist group the following year, and his work was influenced by the dynamic styles of Cubism and Futurism. Horace Brodzky (1885-1969) was an artist and critic, who later wrote of this work: ‘The bust, to use his own words, was ‘cubic’... he has emphasised the planes and exaggerated the asymmetrical in my head’. Brodzky’s bare-chested, heroic pose is slightly undermined by the playful addition of inverted nipples, and the drawings of a woman's head and a fleeing naked man scratched into the torso.

Henri Gaudier-Brzeska was born in 1891 in St Jean de Braye, near Orléans, in France. He died in battle at Neuville-Saint-Vaast in France in 1915.

September 2004