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Little Man

A work made of pen and brush and black ink on cream wove tracing paper.

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  • A work made of pen and brush and black ink on cream wove tracing paper.




George Grosz
American, born Germany, 1893-1959

About this artwork

This evocative drawing exemplifies George Grosz’s interest in creating symbolic self-portraits. Here we see Grosz himself seated at a table, with a cityscape behind him and a “little man” before him. During World War I, he often inserted such figures into paintings, drawings, and prints as a means of self-parody and social commentary. In fact, one scholar has suggested that here the “little man” represents the artist in mannequin form and that therefore the work is a double self-portrait.


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Prints and Drawings


George Grosz


Little Man


Germany (Artist's nationality:)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.



Pen and brush and black ink on cream wove tracing paper


Signed recto, lower right, in pen and black ink: Grosz; inscribed lower right, in graphite: Fertig zum Abzug / für den Stein 1917 Inscribed verso, lower left, in graphit: 32 (encircled); lower right, in graphite: 807-A


25 × 20.1 cm (9 7/8 × 7 15/16 in.)

Credit Line

Gift of Celia and David Hilliard

Reference Number


Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.


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