Commemorating Gustav Klimt in Cyprus
A guided previewing tour through the exhibition to be on show from 4 May - 3 June, 2012 in Nicosia at the Christofides Mansion
By Heidi Trautmann
A ripple of excitement went through the hearts of art lovers in Cyprus when they heard that Gustav Klimt has come to town. On the occasion of his 150th birthday Austria has dedicated the year 2012 to the artist’s life and work with numerous exhibitions in Vienna and across the world. The Embassy of Austria in Nicosia had announced to take part in this undertaking and organised an exhibition around the persona of the artist at the Christofides Mansion in Nicosia.
Being invited to a preview of the exhibition I had the occasion to talk to the Ambassor Mr. Martin Weiss, to the Honorary Consul Mr. Christakis G. Christofides, also the owner of the building where the exhibition has found its venue, and to the curator Dr. Stefan Koja, Art Historian and curator at Belvedere Palace in Vienna who was to take us on a professional guided tour through the exhibition.
Dr. Stefan Koja had come to Nicosia months before to research the possibilities of venue and found the Christofides Mansion the perfect location to recreate the ambiance of Klimt’s time period. The building is a treasure in itself and was opened for the occasion to honour the artist and to receive in its beautiful interior the many evidences of Gustav Klimt’s work and life.
By walking through the Mansion, the visitor will chronologically follow Klimt’s life and artistic growth, gaining an insight and understanding of the life of an artist who broke the traditions of the 19th century and paved the way for the Modernists of the 20th century. Klimt’s dynamic motivation resulted in the formation of important art groups and movements influencing not only the fine arts but also architecture, decorative crafts, fashion and life style in Europe alongside similar movements in Paris, London and Munich.
Gustav Klimt is “a Weaner”, un Viennois, a true Vijanali; he was born on July 14, 1862 in Baumgarten near Vienna. He always lived and worked in Vienna, except sporadically at the Attersee, and his last studio was in Josephstadt, close to Schönbrunn, and he died in Vienna in February 1918. Egon Schiele drew his mentor on his death bed and in the obituary he said: “Gustav Klimt - an artist of unimaginable accomplishment – a human being of rare profoundness – his work is holy.”
The exhibition is chronologically divided into several sections:
Klimt - Up close and personal (1862-1883); Klimt and the Artists’ Company (1883-1892);
Klimt’s Faculty Paintings (1894-1905; Klimt and die Vienna Secession (1897-1905; Klimt’s Landscapes (1898-1917); Klimt’s drawings; Klimt’s Beethoven Frieze (1902); Klimt and his Patrons in “Vienna of 1900”; Klimt and the Stoclet Palace (1904-1909); Klimt and the “Golden Phase” (1903/05-1911); Klimt and Emilie Flöge; Klimt and the Kunstschau (1908/1909); Klimt and the Depiction of the Cycle of Life (1903-1915); Klimt’s last Studio (1912-1918):
This Exhibition is a perfect opportunity for young artists, students, scholars and the general public, to study and understand Gustav Klimt’s work. He was a private person, but at the same time he helped new artists blossom, such as Egon Schiele and Oskar Kokoschka, who quickly became very famous and whose work is exhibited at great museums around the world.
Duration of Exhibition: 04.05.2012 – 03.06.2012
Opening Hours: 12.00 – 20.00 daily (Closed on Mondays)
Saturdays & Sundays 12.00 – 18.00
Location: Christofides Mansion, 18. Byron Avenue, Nicosia
Contact: (0357) 22 41 01 51
The preparations for this event were done by the Austrian Embassy in Nicosia, the Cyprus-Austria Business Association and the Ministry of Education and Culture, Cultural Services and it was sponsored by