(by Gustav Klimt)
This is on oil and gold leaf on canvas, 1907-1908. Österreichische Galerie Belvedere, Vienna, 180 cm × 180 cm.
The Kiss (In German: Der Kuss) was painted by the Austrian Symbolist painter Gustav Klimtbetween 1907-08, the highpoint of his ‘Golden Period’, when he painted a number of works in a similar gilded style.
The Kiss reflects his fascination with eroticism, and while its overall architecture is obviously phallic, it is renowned because of its tender representation of the female model who is tightly embraced within the overall geometry of the picture and whose body is formed from the most detailed, colourful and best expressed abstract passages of Klimt’s career. In its tenderness, the painting deviates from his typical portrayal of woman as distant femme fatales; here the female is the protagonist, rather than merely the object of desire. (Wikipedia July 2012)