The Kiss: Lined Ultra Journal


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The Kiss (1907–1908), the Gustav Klimt painting reproduced here, represents the pinnacle of his “golden phase.” Klimt was firmly convinced that there should be no separation between so-called “low” and “high” forms of art. His canvasses were filled with organic forms reminiscent of the earlier Arts and Crafts movement as well as decorative patterns suggestive of Art Nouveau, both styles that were oriented towards this principle of universal art.

Featuring linear patterns and tender florals, Klimt’s famous The Kiss, reproduced here, shows itself as a direct descendant of these two styles. The speckled golden shimmer of the painting’s background, common to much of the work that Klimt produced during his “golden phase,” was attributed to his fascination with the look of Byzantine religious mosaics that he saw during his travels in Venice and Ravenna. He was also enthusiastic about traditional Japanese art, which would have inspired his flat backgrounds done with the use of gold leaf.

Klimt engaged in many affairs throughout his life, but from the early 1890s until the last of his days he also enjoyed a loyal, though likely platonic, relationship with Emilie Louise Flöge, an Austrian fashion designer. It is believed that the couple captured in a moment of intimate rapture in The Kiss is a depiction of the great painter and his lifelong companion.


Format: Hardback with elastic closure
Pages: 144 lined
Size: 7.00 x 9.00 inches

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