The classical spirit of Nu sur un divan and the monumental simplicity of Picasso’s lines are a demonstration of the artist's Neo-Classical style. Moving away from Synthetic Cubism, Picasso had resorted to weighty, sculptural figures, bearing the serious stare and dignified elegance of the Classical Age. Questioned as to why he had stopped dedicating himself wholeheartedly to Cubism, Picasso had replied: ‘a man does not live by, cannot live by a single invention, a single discovery. It’s not that he could not make do with it, but exhaustion would rapidly create public indifference. And it’s not necessarily that he actively wants to make new progress in the researches he has undertaken; it is, on the contrary, that anyone of above-average sensibility is driven by the propensity to renew himself. Only mediocrity can endure a succession of days which are all the same’ (quoted in E. Cowling, Picasso: Style and Meaning, New York, 2002, pp. 392-393). Signalling a new departure in Picasso’s career, artworks such as Nu sur un divan witness to the artist’s necessity to explore new paths and to his growing interest in the human form that, in the 1920s, would absorb all his attention.