b. 1862
- d. 1918
  • Austria
Turnover 2023
$USD 93.563.943
Record Sale
$USD 108.743.243

Gustav Klimt studied at the Vienna School of Arts and Crafts from 1876 to 1883, where he honed his skills in painting, drawing, and decorative arts. He, along with his brother Ernst and a friend Franz Matsch, formed an art group called the “Company of Artists,” which received numerous commissions for murals and decorative works in public buildings throughout Austria. In the late 19th century, Klimt’s style began to evolve from traditional academic painting to a more avant-garde and symbolist approach. He embraced the fin-de-siècle Viennese cultural atmosphere, which was characterized by intellectual exploration and a fascination with the mysteries of the human psyche. One of his most famous periods is the “Golden Phase,” which began around 1899.

During this time, Klimt produced several of his iconic works, characterized by intricate patterns, gold leaf, and allegorical subjects. Notable paintings from this phase include “The Kiss” and “Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I,” the latter of which is renowned for its opulent decoration and intricate use of gold leaf. Klimt was a founding member and the first president of the Vienna Secession, an artist collective that aimed to break away from traditional academic art and promote new, avant-garde styles. This group allowed Klimt to further experiment with his unique artistic language and explore more daring themes, often featuring the female form, eroticism, and psychology.

Nevertheless, Klimt’s influence on the Art Nouveau movement and his contributions to the development of modern art are undeniable. Tragedy struck in 1918 when Klimt succumbed to pneumonia at the age of 55 during the Spanish flu pandemic. His legacy, however, lived on, and his paintings continued to captivate audiences and influence artists for generations to come. Today, Gustav Klimt is celebrated as one of the most prominent figures of the Symbolist movement and a key contributor to the evolution of modern art.


Record Sale

Gustav KLIMT (1862-1918)
Dame mit Fächer (Lady with a Fan)《持扇的女子》 (1917-1918)

Lot # 125
100.2 x 100.2 cm
Hammer price: $ 94,331,204 (£ 74,000,000 )
Price including buyer’s premium: $ 108,743,227 (£ 85,305,800 )
Modern and Contemporary Evening Auction, featuring Face to Face: A Celebration of Portraiture
27 jun 2023
London, United Kingdom.

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