This is Version I of The Mlle. Pogany series. Brancusi met the Hungarian art student Margit Pogány in Paris in December 1910, and she became both his model and his lover before she left the city in January. Mlle. Pogany is the Brancusi's memory from his lover.
The Mlle. Pogany series occupied Brancusi for some twenty years. He carved the first version of this sculpture in marble from memory in 1912, and made casts in bronze and plaster from the original. Though several stylistic features of the 1912 version reappear in the two subsequent iterations, including the figure’s slender hands and exotically deep-set eyes, the portraits became increasingly abstract.