Thursday, January 10, 2013

Gustav Klimt

Last year, my favorite artist was Frida Kahlo. I loved her for her unique art, which was different from anything I'd ever seen before. This year, I've gotta say I'm loving Gustav Klimt. Every piece of art by him I just love! He has this great rich vibe to all his work that's just amazing. Before I did this project I had no idea who he even was, but now I know he'll be one of my favorites for life. Also, I think I'll need to be getting a painting of his for my room. Here's some background information about him. Gustav Klimt was an Austrian painter born in Vienna in 1862. His family was lower middle-class, so they always were having financial problems. Gustav with his amazing talent was awarded a scholarship to the Vienna School of Arts and Crafts, and received training as an architectural painter. Before he actually started his paintings, he was an interior designer for theaters in Europe with his brother. They were very well renown for their magnificent work. But in 1892, Ernst Klimt, Gustav's brother died and he stopped the theater business. Alone and away from everyone he started to paint in his own way. He wanted to strain from the original Austrian art which was at that time very boring and realistic. Then around 1898, Klimt started his "Golden Age" in which he created some of his most famous pieces of art. Many of his paintings from this period used gold leaf, which is what he is known for today. During this time period, he visited Venice and other European cities where he was inspired by the beautiful mosaics. He incorporated this element into his work also. His most famous painting The Kiss is made with both the gold and mosaic styles featured. This also shows a main style of his paintings: erotic portraits. I love this painting because (other than the fact that it's just so cool) is how detailed it is, yet how simple the actual content is. It's the blanket and the background in this painting that is so rich and interesting. The people also are so interestingly painted. Very non-realistic. This is such a cool painting.
Another famous painting of Klimt was Adele Bloch-Bauer I. This painting turned out to be the most expensive work in history at the time, estimating at $135 million!
I really love this painting. She looks so surrounded by richness and warmth; I want to be her! Gustav must have liked her too, because he sure made her beautiful. I don't think I've ever seen a portrait as different and unique as this. Kilmt's technique of art is just so beautiful. Another painting by him that I love is Death and Life which is actually his last painting.
This depicts the classic Grim Reaper as death on one side and a mass of happy (and naked) people on the other side as Life. I like how this is saying that Life is love. The whole one Life side of the painting so clearly is love and I really like that message. Also, this is different from all the other Klimt paintings, because there's no gold! I do love gold, but this looks so much better with just the rich colors and strong pictures, and gold would have taken away from that. Sadly this was his last painting before he died on February 6, 1918. But I know he'll always be a part of art, for his unique and creative work. I know I will always keep him in my mind when I'm thinking of top amazing artists of all time.

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