Jane Kallir has confirmed the authenticity of this work and has assigned it the number D816a in her archives.
Weiblicher Akt mit Sessel was executed in 1911, a watershed year in Egon Schiele's all-too-brief career. For it was during the course of 1911 that Schiele became increasingly accustomed to women, both in his pictures and in his life, and allowed this new familiarity to extend to his representations of female subjects in his pictures. These now became more life-like while never abandoning the distinctive, expressionistic sense of line that marks the virtuosity of his draughtsmanship. In Weiblicher Akt mit Sessel, he has managed to capture the scene with an incredible, elegant economy of means: the topless woman is staring aside, while standing by the chair. Much of her figure is conveyed through the use of some incredibly fine silhouette-like lines, including her face. Meanwhile, the garment into which her hands are thrust is left almost entirely in reserve, allowing the light colour of the paper to add to the luminosity of the drawing and to its warm sense of life while also deliberately leading the eye towards the upper torso and the face. The chair in the background allows Schiele to create a jutting object which contrasts with the more organic forms of the woman; however, she herself retains a certain angularity, adding a frisson to the picture, a sense of emotional tension that may tie to Schieles own problems with sexuality, which he himself would channel to such effect into his works.
During the early part of 1910, Schiele had made a number of images of female nudes; these had often been angular and characterised by a subtle nervousness, perhaps refecting the awkwardness of the situation in the studio. Many of the fgures had depicted his sister, Gertrude, though he was increasingly turning to other models whom he had met in Krumau or Vienna, some of them prostitutes. This awakening resulted in the entire notion of sexuality becoming less alien to him. In Weiblicher Akt mit Sessel, there is an atmosphere of coyness rather than confrontation that is at odds with his contemporaneous depictions of those models, perhaps indicating a more intensely personal relationship. Certainly, it results in the picture being imbued with a rich psychological dimension, as the viewer, the artist and the model are all thrown self-consciously into scrutiny.