Klimt's Kleiden

Let's travel a titch back in time and to another German speaking country. Back in turn-of-the-century Austria a bohemian master, Gustav Klimt, immortalized many women in his vibrant and seductive paintings. A great deal can be said about this inspiring member of the Vienna Secession - an artist's group greatly propelled to modernize the aesthetic of Jugendstil, or Art Nouveau. 

Gustav Klimt and Emilie Flöge in the Garden of the
Villa Olleander on the Attersee, 1910
Photograph by Hans Böhler
Neue Galerie New York

Very recently fashion designer L'Wren Scott presented her RTW Fall 2013 collection in London's Institute of Engineers. Thanks to Style.com and WWD we can see some examples of the inspiration she took from Gustav Klimt's paintings, which the designer cited herself. 

L'Wren Scott, RTW Fall 2013, Look 7

The gold embroidered collar & shoes paired with a royal blue dress are reminscent of Klimt's portrait of his muse, Emile Floege.
Gustav Klimt, Emile Floege, 1902

Note the hair in the painting & on the runway. In fin-de-siecle Austria this was considered bohemian and unruly. Emile was Klimt's muse & life partner. In the photograph above she is dressed in a dress that she designed. To read more about it click on the photo caption or here.

Me - in Mischa G.'s presentation for Bumble & Bumble, August 2011. 
There was also that one time I did some hair modeling for my best friend Mischa G. - for her graduation presentation at Bumble & Bumble. This is an example of how to recall those unruly bohemian tresses in a very composed & updated way.  Want to see more of Mischa's work? Check out her Tumblr.

L'Wren Scott, Fall 2013 RTW, Look 29

The patterns in these dresses mimic those in the mural Gustav Klimt painted for the Palais Stoclet in Brussels (see photo below).
L'Wren Scott, Fall 2013 RTW, Look 1
The location is remarkably similar in design to the Palais Stoclet in Brussels. Marble encumbers every wall.

The dining hall of the Palais Stoclet in Brussels, designed by Josef Hoffman 1905-11. The  mural,  also known as the Stoclet Frieze, is by Klimt but was badly damaged - beyond recognition in a fire.

L'Wren Scott is not the first to be inspired by the whimsical attire of Klimt's sitters - namely, Adele Bloch-Bauer - whom the artist painted twice.

In 2006 - cosmetics magnate, Ronald Lauder reportedly paid $135 Million for the first portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer, now at the Neue Galerie New York.

Gustav Klimt, Adele Bloch-Bauer, 1907
in situ at the Neue Galerie New York

Has all the hype about the (allegedly) most expensive art acquisition of its time propelled Klimt's work back into the spotlight? Christian Dior's 2008 Spring Couture Collection borrowed a great deal from the artist. Chanel did too...L'Wren Scott isn't the first...but she does continue with the visual lexicon. 


Late 1920s Berlin... noch einmal, bitte!

Art Crush: Christian Schad.

I'm just infatuated with Christian Schad's life, style, painting, and just about everything. To make a very long and complicated and interesting story short - Schad's work traverses several key movements in 20th Century art; Dada, Neue Sachlichkeit (New Objectivity), and even Photorealism. The most interesting part for me at the moment are the portraits he produced in the interwar period.

Christian Schad, Lotte, 1927 (Berlin)
Sprengel Museum, Hannover

Timeless style: sheer white blouse, black ribbon tie, black blazer, red lips, short hair.

Here's me trying to pull off a similar look: 

 Me, after work...going to hang out with my glamorous friends. 

Christian Schad, Sonja, 1928 (Berlin)
Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, Nationalgalerie 

Timeless style: Sheer black tunic, camels. Although, I bet if Sonja were around today - she would wear that tunic as a dress - sans pants. 

Lotte and Sonja are a great example of how confident, stylish, and independent women in Berlin lived at the time. Neither woman was from an upper middle class family  - unlike Mr. Schad whose wealthy lawyer father supported him throughout most of his life. Lotte was a milliner and Sonja was a secretary. Both women, clad with short hair, worked to support themselves but because of their cultural status we mixing with the likes of Mr. Schad and his entourage.

And last but not least, here's a photo of the handsome Mr. Schad himself. *Swoon* ...Could that be our lucky Lotte?

Dapper: Schad and friends in a cafe, Berlin, late 1920s. 


Social issues...

Fall is coming.

The Fall 2012 Louis Vuitton Ad Campaign is here. It's stunning - exploding all over the blog-o-sphere. Although, I first stumbled upon it while flipping through my best friend's September issue of Vogue. 

Fall 2012 Louis Vuitton Ad Campaign via Style by Red

Fall 2012 Louis Vuitton Ad Campaign via Fashion Gone Rogue

Legendary fashion photographer Steven Meisel shot this campaign with models Mackenzie Drazan, Marie Piovesan, Franzsika Mueller, Julia Nobis, Ros Georgiou, Marina Heiden and Elena Bartels. Meisel is beyond clever setting up these images of these beautiful models clad in the finest of luxury. It's no doubt a tongue in cheek ode to Daumier's Third Class Carriage - a beautiful painting of the less fortunate working class on their evening commute. The compositions are strikingly similar as the disparities between the social statuses of the women in each image. 

Honore Daumier, Third Class Carriage, ca. 1862-1964, oil on canvas, 25 3/4 x 35 1/2 in. H.O. Havemeyer Collection, Bequest of Mrs. H. O. Havemeyer, 1929 to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City. Currently on view in Gallery 802.

This painting was made by an artist who was well known for his political caricatures in the Parisian journal 
Le Charivari, in a time of social and political upheaval in France. Plenty of correlations can be made with the economic status of France at the time and that of the United States. There were few extremely wealthy people with a great deal of power and a lot of working class people with little power and wealth. 

Do you think Steven Meisel is making a statement about our Society? Or is it just Smoke & Mirrors?


P.S. - A little known fact: Daumier began his career as a caricaturist who mocked the regime of the French King Louis Philippe. He often drew him as a poire (french word for "pear", slang for "fathead"). Aren't those LV hats huge? 

Louis Philippe by Daumier via L'Historie Par L'Image