Last year, The Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer II by Gustav Klimt was sold for 150 million USD. Its value had increased by 71% since 2006 when Oprah Winfrey auctioned it at Christies. Klimt’s works have always been at the centre of media attention. In 2015, a film, Woman in Gold, was released starring Helen Mirren, about the lawsuit over Klimt’s artworks between Maria Altmann, Bloch-Bauer’s niece and the Austrian government.
Klimt’s artworks are widely popular and capture everyone’s heart whether it is a museum exhibit or inspiration from various decorative items. What makes his work so appealing is his distinct and unique artistic style. They are incredibly sensuous, elaborate and symbolic but at the same time lean toward abstraction, a great combination between the old and modern schools. His use of eclectic and metallic color makes his work so electrifying, suitable for all spaces, especially great with any plain wall colors. The fine intricate and elaborate details enhanced by his flat styled painting always make sure that your interior will always be interesting.
In The Kiss, his most celebrated artwork, the artist uses gold leaves on canvas, the signature of his renowned Golden Phase. The golden painting features two lovers embracing each other while a man gently kisses a woman. Their bodies become one entity and can only be differentiated through small square and circle mosaics forming part of the male and female figures. It’s a very romantic piece, accentuated by the use of a striking golden hue.
A female figure is the main subject of Ritratto di Signora. The piece displays an oriental influence with beautiful symbolic animals and flowers in an Eastern artistic style, acting as an ornament in the background. In the foreground, a woman is sensually wearing a kimono with a dropped shoulder while holding a fan to cover the part of her body that is revealed. This piece will give a space an exotic touch creating a perfect blend of West and East.
Not all his subject matters are figurative, Klimt is also praised for his garden and flower paintings. Il Giardino di Campagna con girasoli shows his talent through colors selection and ingenious composition. Small colorful flowers and green leaves are cleverly put together to highlight big yellow sunflowers and blossom white flowers. The whole painting is filled with a lavish and complex combination of colors. It is a perfect answer for those looking for a unique and unusual stunning flora painting.
Klimt’s works capture people’s imagination and desires. They reveal his passion, which in turn creates emotion for viewers from all walks of life. His refusal to follow the rigid techniques of old official and his support for decorative arts, make his works more accessible and appeal to a wide audience. As a result, his achievements are applauded and have become equally significant either in a prestigious museum or in a more private setting.
By Nim Niyomsin