Essay Egon Schiele

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In the following year he broke off his relationship with Wally Neuziel, whom he had been attached to for four years, and married Edith Harms.

When Egon Schiele was a soldier for two years since 1915, he painted only very few pictures.

Stripping his figures of any mollifying aesthetic context, he set them adrift in a pictorial void that served as a visual correlative for existential uncertainty.

Schiele turned up the pitch on his previously harmonious and muted palette, juxtaposing vivid slashes of green, orange, yellow and red with masterly abandon.

This stylistic shift emerged most significantly in a series of nudes done during the early months of the year: females (often the artist’s favorite sister, Gerti) cowed by the discovery of their emergent sexuality, and males (probably the artist himself) reveling in the force of a raging libido.

Schiele’s professional prospects prospered apace in 1910.

In 1906, the young Schiele entered the class of Christian Griepenkerl, a painter of portraits and historic events at the Wiener Akademie, who was still rooted very much in the traditional disciplines.

The imposed studies there, which Egon Schiele practised only reluctantly, left no significant traces in his personal artistic style.

During most of 1909, Schiele remained firmly under Klimt’s influence--he even referred to himself as “The Silver Klimt.” Not just his use of metallic pigment, but the gestures and linear stylization of his compositions bound the younger artist to the master.

Schiele would retain from this phase a reliance on taut, emotionally charged line and an acute awareness of negative space, but in 1910 he abruptly abandoned all Klimtian decorative pretenses.


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