Klimt’s signature piece from the Gold period and one of the world’s most recognizable artworks, The Kiss (1907-1908), was an incredibly valuable piece even before it reached the astronomical prices of late-twentieth century auctions. Intricately worked with gold leaf, the painting is a departure from the artist’s usual taste for the female form, and celebrates art for art’s sake and love for the sake of love. A more delicate, bombastic, and glorious triumph of form and style is difficult to find from any artist in any period. A starkly linear work, Klimt rejoices in a playful reproduction of high-Byzantine ornamental and devotional art, as nature and human forms are entwined through the embrace, in this defining work of the Art Nouveau period. This ‘new art’ promoted by Klimt and his contemporaries proposed an elegant and ornamental style reflecting an affection for contemporary architecture, furniture, jewelry and interior design in the hope of achieving a ‘total’ work of art. This meditation on the relationship between forms of artistic expression was characterized by highly stylized plants reflecting the increasing standardization of man-made materials.
Owing much to the Byzantine mosaics that Klimt had seen on his travels to Ravenna, The Kiss is far from an obedient reproduction. The Byzantine mosaics of the 6th - 7th century are devotional journeys of self-absorption and dedication. Klimt, on the other hand, secularizes the style replacing the figure of God for that of the truth and beauty of art and love as the figures combined in an embrace echo the rhythms and dynamism of the ornamental design. The trance-like state and rapt depiction of the forms mirrors that of his contemporaries in sculpture such as Rodin, as well as Brancusi’s sculpture of the same title. Therein Klimt achieves the same formal intensity as a well-wrought block of stone. Klimt’s passionate painting was also a reflection of his rampant personal appetite, fathering at least 14 illegitimate children, and a reflection of his affection for his life-time companion Emile Floge, who was said to be the female model of the painting.
Important Notes About Your Painting:
If you have any request to alter your reproduction of The Kiss, you must email us after placing your order and we'll have an artist contact you. If you have another image of The Kiss that you would like the artist to work from, please include it as an attachment. Otherwise, we will reproduce the above image for you exactly as it is.