|Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I , by Gustav Klimt
photo source: Wikipedia
In brief, this glorious painting, was finally returned to Adele Bloch-Bauer’s niece after it had been stolen by the Nazis and kept in Austria. She then sold it to Ronald Lauder for $135 million. It now hangs in the Neue Gallery in New York, where everyone can enjoy it.
Although Klimt knew his subject well, he chose to portray her in his symbolist style. Her beautiful face is dreamy and arresting, but the rest of the painting is an amazing design, rendered exquisitely in oil paint and gold leaf, with many patterns in her dress and on the wall behind her.
I started thinking about how the female figure has always inspired artists, since the very beginning of visual art. While we can appreciate the classical depictions of women, it’s interesting to see how artists have interpreted this subject differently.
|In Your Dreams
In her biography, she said, “My paintings are a word of youth, a secret world of leisure and play, of lovely places…It’s a world apart from today’s realism and society’s struggles.” Her painting entitled “In Your Dreams” is a good example. The well-dressed figure is looking out pensively, and behind her are the elements of a cozy home: colorful rugs, part of a chair, dogs and a rocking horse. Although these elements are not arranged in a traditional way, we can understand the story. The open composition style and the way she shows only part of most objects makes the painting more interesting to me.
|The Good in Everything
Andrea’s women are portrayed in many different ways. The figure in “The Rider” is completely different; she looks determined and commanding as she leads her horse. Her dress is modern, even a little sexy for a horse rider (maybe her pants are in the barn). Then, in another style, Andrea invokes her inner Degas in the painting entitled “Corps de Ballet.” She said, “In this painting, I was working with composition, focusing on the body poses. I liked showing the back view of the dancers, making them anonymous, and thus asking the viewer to think about their expressions.” The beautiful pastel hues and Andrea’s painterly brushwork for the background give the work great energy. The dancers look as if they just finishing twirling!
Linda Carter Holman
Linda Carter Holman
You can see more art by Jacqueline Rochester, Linda Carter Holman and Andrea Peterson at Wilde Meyer Gallery.