Another in my 2018 European holiday series.
Today I am in Vienna for my first ever visit. One of my priorities has been to visit the Leopold Museum to see an exhibition of a well known artist – and I am surprised by his beautiful early works which I hadn’t seen before.
I wonder if you know who the artist is from looking at these pics?
The artist is Gustav Klimt and I think that these beautiful examples demonstrate the depth and breadth of his abilities.
After studying at the Vienna School of Decorative Arts, Klimt opened an independent studio in 1883 specialising in mural paintings.
His early work had a classical style that was typical of late 19th-century academic painting.
In 1897 Klimt’s mature style emerged, and he founded the Vienna Sezession, a group of painters who revolted against academic art in favour of a highly decorative style similar to Art Nouveau.
Klimt’s most successful works include The Kiss (1908–09) and a series of portraits of fashionable Viennese matrons, such as Fritza Riedler (1906) and Adele Bloch-Bauer I (1907). In these works he treats the human figure without shadow and heightens the lush sensuality of skin by surrounding it with areas of flat, highly ornamental, brilliantly composed areas of decoration. Source: Britannica.com
As stated in the Britannia bio above, it appeared that his style began to change from the style shown above to his more recognised style from the late 1890s. The first one below was completed in 1907.
This exhibition was a wonderful surprise, and the surprises kept coming as I discovered the Heidi Horton collection, also at the Leopold Museum – see pics in next blog.
Postscript: here are some photos of the paintings that Klimt was commissioned to do for the Kunsthishistorisches Museum in Vienna which I discovered during my visit.