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Gustav Klimt


Collotype on chine colle on handmade Japon paper, from the portfolio "Das Werk Gustav Klimts," Vienna, 1908-14 (H. O. Miethke, Editor-Publisher, K.K. Hof-und Staatsdruckerei, Printer). This series is the result of collaborative project between the Viennese Gallery Miethke, under the supervision of the master painter Gustav Klimt. It is known that the project started in 1908 and took six years to be completed before Klimt's perfectionist eye was satisfied. The set was released in groups of ten images, including two color masterpieces, every 18 months starting in 1908. The Gallery Miethke in Vienna was the pioneering "Art House" where Gustav Klimt was exclusively represented. The prints in "Das Werk Gustav Klimts" depict Klimt's most important paintings from 1898-1913.

Gustav Klimt is best known for his opulently gilded art nouveau portraits of women that epitomize fin-de-siècle Vienna. His Symbolist pastiches of pale nudes, allegorical gardens and erotic content served as the basis for many American  poster designs in the 1960s. Early in his career, Klimt was supported generously by the Viennese community, and received several commissions for murals in theaters and the Museum Kunsthistorisches. Early narrative paintings depicted heavy subjects such as anxiety, doubt, sexuality, and death, but in later years, he turned toward landscape painting, exploring light and abstract patterns of nature. His most famous paintings are The Kiss (1907) and Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer (1907), which sold for a record auction price of more than 100 million dollars in 2006.

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