The kiss may be one of Gustav Klimt’s most important contributions to modern art and today’s popular culture. The work, made between 1907-1908, has been the subject of many conspiracy theories. However, apart from this tabloid side, Kiss is one of Sensationalism and Art Nouveau’s best examples.
Klimt, Vienna, Golden Age
The Kiss is a work of Gustav Klimt’s period that is known as the Golden Period. Anyone looking at Kiss, or any painting done during this period, will quickly understand why it is called ‘gold.’
As it is seen in Kiss, the golden color stands out in work. The artist has successfully applied the gold leaf technique to give this powerful effect. Behind this technical success of Kiss is that the artist’s father was a gold engraver. Klimt has had an idea of gold and its processing by observing his father since childhood.
Using foil in the Kiss or generally in the Golden Period is the trip to Italy. The St. The Vitale Church has deeply influenced the artist. The church’s gold mosaics’ influence can be seen in this period’s works, including The Kiss.
Love and Thriller
The kiss has been seen as a symbol of love for many years. In this work, the male and female figures, located in a space detached from reality, have become one with great love. While the man kisses the woman passionately, the woman seems to close her eyes and leave herself to him.
The kiss is pretty simple in composition. Perspective is not even used. However, it is the embellishments that Klimt elaborated with the effect of symbolism that make The Kiss so impressive. The woman in The Kiss is dressed in more circular forms. These forms evoke fertility and eternity. The male, on the other hand, has an outfit consisting of sharp border rectangles.
Contrary to that contrast, the two have become a whole, and even a golden bubble has formed around them. It is possible to interpret this in the symbolist expression of Kiss as being one with love, being ecstatic, and moving away from the rest of the world. Likewise, uncertain space represents a break from reality.
Despite this great love between the couple in Kiss, the two are on the edge of an abyss. That is the only clue we have about the place in the work. But even that much was enough to add tension to the picture.
In contrast to Kiss’s loving interpretations, there is also an interpretation that the woman in work is resisting the man. According to this, the woman’s being so nervous and unresponsive to the man’s passionate kiss shows that he is not satisfied with this situation.
Unfortunately, it is not possible to comment on which of these various comments on Kiss is correct because Klimt did not make any written or oral statements about his works. However, we know that before the Kiss started to be called by this name, the artist called it “Lovers.”
Regardless, this work continues to be one of the most important symbols of love in art today. And with golden sparkles!