This life mask of Beethoven appears as flesh-colored with subtle darkening in the lines and indentations that mark lips, eyes, and a nose. The forehead is large and unlined to the eyebrows. The flesh in the eyebrow area appears to scrunch together. The eyes are closed and set in moderately close to the nose. The nose is average in length and width. A faint line on each side of the nose runs down and out toward the sides of the mouth, and a shadow is cast under the nose. The mouth is a simple, deeply indented line, slightly downturned at the corners, and there is a cleft in the chin, which helps to make the lower lip more pronounced. At the top of the mask is a simple, square-shaped hook.
Isabella Stewart Gardner kept meticulous records of many of her acquisitions. In keeping with this legacy, object information is continually being reviewed, updated, and enriched in order to give greater access to the collection.