The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 United States Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Vienna museum's 'Stairway to Klimt' takes visitors to new heights
A picture taken on February 12, 2018 shows scaffolders under a suspended bridge, twelve metres above ground, allowing visitors to take a closer look to paintings by Austrian painter Gustav Klimt which adorn the arches of the mains staircase at the Kunsthistorisches Museum (KHM) in Vienna during the exhibition titled "Stairway to Klimt". The exhibition, marking the centenary of the death of Gustav Klimt (1862-1918), allow visitors to access 13 paintings, commissioned by Emperor Franz Joseph. JOE KLAMAR / AFP.

by Philippe Schwab

VIENNA (AFP).- Visitors to Vienna's art history museum on Monday enjoyed a closer look at 13 of Gustav Klimt's unsung masterpieces thanks to a walkway erected over a monumental central stairway.

The sprawling Kunsthistorisches Museum (KHM), opened in 1891 under Emperor Franz-Joseph, houses one of Europe's most important art collections while also showcasing interior design by the cream of Vienna's artists and sculptors.

Among those commissioned to decorate the building was Klimt, then 28 and considered a rising star of the Austrian neo-classical school.

But until now the museum’s 1.4 million annual visitors could only admire the paintings from afar.

The eye-level experience is well worth the climb up the "Stairway to Klimt", as the museum has dubbed the new installation, in a nod to the song by heavy-metal band Led Zeppelin.

Paying homage to the Venetian, Roman and Florentine traditions of the Quattrocento, as well as to Egyptian art, the superbly preserved works are testament to the young Klimt's artistic maturity and hint at the future course of the Vienna Secession.

They show his use of gilding, full-length portraits, monumental motifs inspired by Japanese prints and above all a delicate sensuality.

"Even though still attached to historicism, the work already shows the beginnings of Modernism," said Daniel Uchtmann, art historian at the KHM.

Of particular note among the works is of a nude Egyptian-inspired goddess depicted in a provocative pose. "Even though it didn't cause any particular scandal, this sort of representation was quite daring in the context of a public building," Uchtmann said.

Klimt had already been commissioned for several public projects with his brother Ernst, with whom he founded a company in 1883 for this purpose, the Kuenstler-Compagnie.

He continued pushing artistic boundaries before breaking free of the Association of Austrian Artists and helping to found the Vienna Secession movement.

In 1905 Klimt found himself forced to buy back three canvases from the University of Vienna after outrage sparked by their "provocative" nature.

The Stairway to Klimt is part of dozens of exhibitions being held in Austria this year to mark the centenary of Klimt's death on February 6, 1918, as well as to honour three other major figures of Viennese modernism, Egon Schiele, Koloman Moser and Otto Wagner.

The stairway will stay in place until September 2.

© Agence France-Presse

Today's News

February 13, 2018

France hands back Nazi looted art by Flemish master Joachim Patinir to Jewish family

Stadel Museum opens a comprehensive special exhibition dedicated to Peter Paul Rubens

Artemis Gallery to auction highly refined selection of antiquities & ethnographic art, Feb. 15

Obamas reveal unconventional portraits in Washington

Metropolitan Museum of Art commemorates Olympics with Korean exhibition

The San Diego Museum of Art acquires works by Lucas Cranach The Younger and John Singer Sargent

Terracotta warriors exhibition opens at Liverpool's World Museum

The world of Federico Fellini arrives at Museo Picasso Málaga

Vienna museum's 'Stairway to Klimt' takes visitors to new heights

Harn Museum of Art displays works by influential American artist Jacob Lawrence

John McEnroe's Mark Bradford masterwork to be sold at Phillips

Exhibition featuring twelve historical performance editions by Marina Abramović opens at Sean Kelly

Auerbach and School of London artists lead Bonhams Post-War and Contemporary Art sale

New creative awards and advocacy group set up in response to BREXIT

Basquiat and Warhol share the spotlight in Woodshed Art Auctions' Feb. 1 online sale

HOME opens first major UK solo exhibition by Noor Afshan Mirza & Brad Butler: The Scar

Moscow Museum of Modern Art opens the first solo exhibition of London-based Chinese artist Jacky Tsai

Ayyam Gallery Beirut opens a solo exhibition of artist Elias Izoli

'Monster fatberg' goes on public display in London

New scholarship and research offers comprehensive look at Clarence H. White's career

Lovers through the lens - auction's photo archive recalls enduring modern love story

Premier collection of antique valentines comes to the Huntington

The Freud Museum opens an exhibition of new work by Gideon Rubin

Most Popular Last Seven Days

1.- Underground in Jerusalem, a rare look at an ancient tomb

2.- Research reveals new species are evolving fastest in Antarctica

3.- Tate Modern opens the UK's first major Pierre Bonnard exhibition in 20 years

4.- Travel ban for 'fragile' Van Gogh's 'Sunflowers'

5.- Holocaust museum stokes controversy among Hungary's Jews

6.- Rare Hassam, Jefferson letter and Sèvres porcelain offered at Potomack Auction

7.- 'Discriminating Thieves: Nazi-Looted Art and Restitution' opens at Nelson-Atkins

8.- Andy Goldsworthy to create Walking Wall on Nelson-Atkins campus

9.- US university to cover Christopher Columbus murals

10.- Leonardo da Vinci's drawings go under the microscope in a new publication

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher:Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful