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Nude Drawings

Nude drawings are one of the most popular genres in the history of the art form. They most often depict female figures unclothed in a manner that serves to emphasize the innate beauty of the human body. The term "nude" is distinguished from "naked" in the sense that it is an idealization of the body as opposed to candid portrayal, replete with mortal imperfections, of the subject.

The tradition of nude drawings rose to popularity in ancient Greece as artists honed their representation of the musculature, anatomy, and proportions of the human body. This art form has maintained its popularity for millennia, proving that the human form constitutes a subject matter of perennial interest worldwide.

In the 20th century, artists such as Lucien Freud rejected the classical aims of nude drawings. They presented unclothed subjects who appear grotesque and monstrous rather than romanticized. This impulse reflects the modernist tendency to spurn traditional modes of expression in favor of creations that oppose conventional tastes and propose new possibilities for understanding beauty.


Quick Facts

  • In 2012, Acquavella Gallery held an exhibition of Lucien Freud’s drawings, including many examples of nude drawings created over the past 40 years
  • German artist Egon Schiele is one of the most celebrated and prolific producers of nude drawings. In February 2015, Sotheby’s sold a Schiele drawing, "Female Nude with Raised Arms," for $245,000
  • American artist Thomas Eakins created many nude drawings that included portraits of male subjects. While they were considered controversial at the time, they are now highly celebrated and valuable

Recommended Items at Auction

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ATTR CADMUS Signed Nude Male Figure Drawing
Oct 19, 10:00 AM EDT
ATTR CADMUS Signed Nude Male Figure Drawing
by The Benefit Shop Foundation Inc.
Est: $20- $100
$2007 Bids
Exquisite Corpse Surrealist Drawings, Leonore Fini, Stanisloa Lepri & Jelenski
Oct 10, 7:00 PM EDT
Exquisite Corpse Surrealist Drawings, Leonore Fini, Stanisloa Lepri & Jelenski
by Kensington Estate Auctions
Est: $500- $800
$8506 Bids
Paul Cadmus Male Nude Crayon on Green Paper
Sep 28, 10:00 AM CDT
Paul Cadmus Male Nude Crayon on Green Paper
by Revere Auctions
Est: $600- $1,200
$5006 Bids
ATTR EGON SCHIELE Graphite Drawing
Sep 28, 10:00 AM EDT
ATTR EGON SCHIELE Graphite Drawing
by The Benefit Shop Foundation Inc.
Est: $200- $500
$1254 Bids
Paul Cadmus Lovers Colored Pencil on Paper
Sep 28, 10:00 AM CDT
Paul Cadmus Lovers Colored Pencil on Paper
by Revere Auctions
Est: $800- $1,600
$2004 Bids
European School, Male Nude
Oct 04, 12:00 PM EDT
European School, Male Nude
by Old Kinderhook Auction Company
Est: $100- $200
$1603 Bids
Paul Cadmus Nude Figure Crayon on Paper
Sep 28, 10:00 AM CDT
Paul Cadmus Nude Figure Crayon on Paper
by Revere Auctions
Est: $1,000- $2,000
$2753 Bids
Salvador Dali , drawing hand signed
Oct 02, 10:15 PM CEST
Salvador Dali , drawing hand signed
by Novartia
Est: €3,600- €3,800
€3002 Bids
Leonor Fini 1907-1996 Erotic Figural Nude Drawing
Sep 28, 12:00 PM EDT
Leonor Fini 1907-1996 Erotic Figural Nude Drawing
by Hill Auction Gallery
Est: $100- $1,000
$752 Bids
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3 ORIGINAL NUDE SKETCHES OF WOMEN, CHOCK MARK IN BOTTOM RIGHT HAND CORNER, 1975
Sep 29, 9:00 AM AEST
3 ORIGINAL NUDE SKETCHES OF WOMEN, CHOCK MARK IN BOTTOM RIGHT HAND CORNER, 1975
by Albion Antique Auction Centre
Est: AUD10- AUD40
AUD152 Bids
Victor Olson (CT,1924-2007) pastel painting
Oct 09, 11:45 AM EDT
Victor Olson (CT,1924-2007) pastel painting
by Broward Auction Gallery LLC
Est: $525- $675
$2801 Bid
BEN SHAHN (AMERICAN 1898-1969)
Oct 15, 10:00 AM EDT
BEN SHAHN (AMERICAN 1898-1969)
by Shapiro Auctions LLC
Est: $250- $500
$1251 Bid
mommy Schwarz , Female nude
Oct 06, 10:00 AM CEST
mommy Schwarz , Female nude
by Twents Veilinghuis
Est: €0- €0
€1501 Bid
LEONOR FINI (Argentinian 1907-1996) A DRAWING, "Gestural Sketch of a Nude Woman,"
Oct 01, 9:00 AM CDT
LEONOR FINI (Argentinian 1907-1996) A DRAWING, "Gestural Sketch of a Nude Woman,"
by Simpson Galleries, LLC
Est: $300- $500
$1501 Bid
Earl Horter, Mermaid
Sep 29, 11:00 AM EDT
Earl Horter, Mermaid
by Rago Arts and Auction Center
Est: $600- $800
$501 Bid
Lorna Marsh 1949-2022 Surrealist Charcoal Drawing
Sep 28, 12:00 PM EDT
Lorna Marsh 1949-2022 Surrealist Charcoal Drawing
by Hill Auction Gallery
Est: $100- $1,000
$501 Bid
Ramon Santiago 1943-2001 Figural Pastel Drawing
Sep 28, 12:00 PM EDT
Ramon Santiago 1943-2001 Figural Pastel Drawing
by Hill Auction Gallery
Est: $100- $1,000
$501 Bid
ANTIQUE ITALIAN 17TH CENTURY SEPIA INK DRAWING SEA GODS
Sep 30, 12:00 PM EDT
ANTIQUE ITALIAN 17TH CENTURY SEPIA INK DRAWING SEA GODS
by Converse Auctions
Est: $100- $200
$101 Bid
F Vanacore (US,20/21C) pastel painting
Oct 09, 11:45 AM EDT
F Vanacore (US,20/21C) pastel painting
by Broward Auction Gallery LLC
Est: $320- $425
$1800 Bids
Lot of three works on paper
Oct 06, 2:00 PM CEST
Lot of three works on paper
by Bertolami Fine Art
Est: €0- €0
€500 Bids
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Adam Abraham Graphite On Wood Panel “Dawn", 2013
Oct 08, 12:00 PM EDT
Adam Abraham Graphite On Wood Panel “Dawn", 2013
by Neely Auction
Est: $100- $200
$500 Bids
Z Soto (US,mid 20C) pastel painting
Nov 13, 11:45 AM EST
Z Soto (US,mid 20C) pastel painting
by Broward Auction Gallery LLC
Est: $425- $550
$2600 Bids
Ernie Centofanti (CA,b 1956) pastel painting
Nov 13, 11:45 AM EST
Ernie Centofanti (CA,b 1956) pastel painting
by Broward Auction Gallery LLC
Est: $360- $450
$1800 Bids
Kirilova Julia (Ukrane,20/21C) pastel painting
Nov 13, 11:45 AM EST
Kirilova Julia (Ukrane,20/21C) pastel painting
by Broward Auction Gallery LLC
Est: $300- $400
$1600 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Nude Drawings


East Coast Books

East Coast Books

Broward Auction Gallery LLC

Broward Auction Gallery LLC

De Vuyst

De Vuyst

Dreweatts 1759 Fine Sales

Dreweatts 1759 Fine Sales