A New Method of Surface Ornamentation: Ludwig Hevesi's Malmosaik in Gustav Klimt's Faculty Paintings, Beethoven Frieze and Stoclet Frieze
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The Austrian art critic Ludwig Hevesi wrote the article "Gustav Klimt und die Malmosaik" in August of 1907 after seeing two separate exhibitions with paintings by the Austrian artist Gustav Klimt. The first exhibition had three easel paintings and the second, three decorative ceiling paintings. Despite the obvious differences between the two types of paintings, Hevesi noted a stylistic continuity between them. He created the term, Malmosaik, applicable to both easel and decorative painting, in order to discuss this continuity in his written criticisms. This thesis examines the applicability of the Malmosaik in Klimt's Faculty Paintings, Beethoven Frieze and Stoclet Frieze, and its impact on traditional notions of medium purity in turn-of-the-century Vienna. The Malmosaik, as it developed in Klimt's work, is discussed here as an innovative, non-medium specific aesthetic unique to Vienna.