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Everything is ready in the Sugar Palace for the opening of the “Unknown Klimt – Love, Death, Ecstasy” exhibition. The exhibition is fully set up, and the only thing missing are the visitors. As could be heard during the preparatory work, in the announcement of the event, the exhibition was supposed to open on 20th April. Due to current anti-epidemic measures, the date has been moved. The new date depends on the upcoming decisions of the county covid headquarters.

Original paintings by Gustav and Ernst Klimt and their friend Franz Matsch, commissioned for the decoration of the interior of the Rijeka theatre, are placed at the exhibition in such a way as to evoke a theatrical atmosphere, thus emphasizing their glamorous component, both the one of yesterday, when they were installed on the vault of the spectacular theatre building with the architectural signature of the Viennese atelier Fellner & Helmer, as well as the one of today, considering that the paintings can be seen by visitors for the first time after 136 years at a “normal” eye-level distance. The paintings in the Sugar Palace are accompanied by multimedia, interactive projections with the works of Gustav Klimt from his later phase. These are recordings of works kept in Austrian and Romanian museums.

One interactive projection is intended for a younger audience. It connects Klimt’s theatrical paintings, including studies and drawings for individual Rijeka paintings, with Rijeka’s cultural heritage and wider historical-cultural context. The other one brings a counterpoint to the youthful public work by talking about the painter’s later creative phase. There you can see a series of erotic drawings which had additionally tickled the interest of his contemporaries in his work.

The exhibition catalogue has also arrived at the Museum, with contributions by 15 leading domestic and international connoisseurs of Gustav Klimt’s works. The emphasis is on his earlier artistic phase, which means that the texts largely talk about the influence of Gustav Klimt’s painting beginnings on the author’s upheaval that followed the Rijeka episode and is considered one of the most revolutionary in the history of art. The edition offers the story of Klimt on 235 pages, it is richly illustrated and written in two language variants, Croatian and English. The pictorial contributions do not only present paintings from Rijeka, but also works that show the influence of predecessors and contemporaries on the stylistic development of the most famous of the three painters who decorated the vault of the Rijeka theater 136 years ago.




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