This painting is a typical representation of Klimt’s stylized eroticism, and portrays the subject of Danae, which has been a popular theme throughout painting, having been painted before by Corregio, Rembrandt, and Titian. Danae was the symbol of divine love, transcendence, and sensational beauty. By positioning the model with a raised leg, this painting pays tribute to the Titian series of paintings by the same name. As the story goes, while Danae was imprisoned by her father, she was visited by Zeus, in the form of the golden rain flowing between her legs. Soon after Zeus’ visit, Danae became pregnant and gave birth to her son Perseus.More ...
Danaë is an oil painting by Gustav Klimt, created in 1907. An example of Symbolism, the canvas measures 77 x 83 cm, and is in the Galerie Würthle in Vienna. Danaë was a popular subject in the early 1900s for many artists; she was used as the quintessential symbol of divine love, and transcendence.
While imprisoned by her father, King of Argos, in a tower of bronze, Danaë was visited by Zeus, symbolized here as the golden rain flowing between her legs. It is apparent from the subject's face that she is aroused by the golden stream.
In this work, she is curled in a royal purple veil which refers to her imperial lineage. Sometime after her celestial visitation she gave birth to a son, Perseus, who is cited later in Greek mythology for slaying the Gorgon Medusa and rescuing Andromeda.
Many early portrayals of Danaë were erotic; other paintings completed in similar style are Klimt's Medicine (1900–1907), and Water Snakes (1904–1907).
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