Klimt - The Virgin

Gustav Klimt, “The Virgin”, 1913, Oil on canvas, 190 x 200 cm, National Gallery Prague.

Klimt & Rodin: Artistic Encounter in San Francisco

The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco presents ‘Klimt & Rodin: An Artistic Encounter’, celebrating the legacies of these two pioneers. October 14, 2017 – January 28, 2018.

Source: Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco

The exhibition will celebrate the legacies of these two pioneers, who each broke the reigning aesthetic boundaries of the time to find new vocabularies and create powerful agendas for modern painting and sculpture. Arranged in dialogue with the Legion of Honor’s acclaimed collection of Rodin works, “Klimt & Rodin” will provide an incredibly rare opportunity for American audiences to see a range of signature works by the Austrian master Klimt, many of which will travel to the U.S. for the first time.

Setting the context for the exhibition will be two seven-foot-tall panels reproduced from one of Klimt’s most celebrated works, the Beethoven Frieze (1902). The exhibition copy of the frieze will give American audiences a special opportunity to experience the iconic work outside of Vienna. Widely regarded as the start of Klimt’s “golden period”, the frieze was painted for the 14th Vienna Secessionist exhibition in celebration of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony and illustrates the human desire for happiness in a tempestuous world marked by suffering.

A key moment of the exhibition will be the meeting between Klimt and Rodin in 1902. While Klimt, the president of the Vienna Secession, was still developing his signature style, Rodin was at the peak of his international fame. Vienna was honored to welcome the sculptor, who had exhibited several key works at the Vienna Secession — one of the most innovative manifestations of Viennese Modernism — the year prior. Rodin visited the exhibition in person and was fascinated by its temple-like space and the groundbreaking Beethoven Frieze, which lead to a meeting between the two artists. “Klimt & Rodin” will stage another encounter between the two artists for the first time in more than a century.

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