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The Kiss by Gustav Klimt is one of the most recognised and reproduced paintings in the world. It is perhaps the most popular poster on student dorm walls from Beijing to Boston.
Painted in Vienna around 1908, the evocative image of an unknown embracing couple has captivated viewers with its mystery, sensuality and dazzling materials ever since it was created. But just what lies behind the appeal of the painting – and just who was the artist that created it?
Delving into the details of real gold, decorative designs, symbolism and simmering erotica, a close study of the painting takes us to the remarkable turn of the century Vienna when a new world was battling with the old.
Klimt was a titan of the Art Nouveau movement, creating decadent new worlds which merged tender sensuality, ancient mythology and radical modernity.
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