Hello Beautiful Thinkers,
I’ve already detoured from my mission of watching The Tudors and instead have been filling my spare time with one of my favorite shows, Buffy the Vampire Slayer. This detour has a silver lining though, well two silver linings. One, it brought me to today’s post and two, I was watching Buffy! So in the first episode of season four, Buffy has a showdown with a vamp gang that’s been picking off the freshmen population at UC Sunnydale. There’s a scene where the vamps are going through the stolen belongings of a recent kill. In these belongings is a poster of The Kiss by Gustav Klimt, the subject of today’s post! (Quick round of applause to Buffy the Vampire Slayer for its involvement in the post!)
So The Kiss, or Der Kuss in German, was created by Austrian painter Gustav Klimt back in 1908 with oil paint on a square canvas measuring 180 x 180 cm. The use of layers of gold leaf in the painting helped to make it strikingly modern at the time and helped establish its place today as a masterpiece of the early modern period. Widely considered Klimt’s most popular work, The Kiss is different from most of his other paintings because it shows the woman in a tender light rather than as a distant object of desire in the painting.
Many of the paintings Klimt did before this one were viewed as pornography at the time. The same can’t be said about The Kiss though. Both figures painted wear golden-yellow outfits that almost flow into each other, certainly implying the sexual desire between the couple but allowing the mind to explore that further on its own. With a quick glance it’s almost hard to tell where the man’s robe and woman’s dress meet, but as you look closer the division can be spotted in the patterns on each one’s wardrobe. The aspects of nature surrounding the couple and in their hair is a beautiful way to work in other colors and place the couple in another world as the industrial revolution build up cities over nature.
According to the Klimt website, this painting is now in the Österreichische Galerie Belvedere museum in Vienna. If you want to help “team Klimt” and be like the college freshmen in the Buffy episode, you can find Klimt posters all over the internet for as low as $0.68 plus shipping. Or you could just be like me and check it out on for free on the internet. Maybe one day I’ll get a chance to see it in person.
Keep Learning Beautiful Thinkers,
The Boy In The Heart Shades
(Slumber Party with my editor!)