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Gustav Klimt's engaging Fulfillment Stoclet Frieze is one of the paintings in a series.
They were all mosaics and were placed in the Stoclet palace, which lends them their name. The artist had started to focus more on working with gold and the Fulfillment Stoclet Frieze was completed during his Golden Era.
The Golden Era in Klimt's career was distinguished by the inclusion of gold leaf in his paintings. "Fulfillment" comes after "The Dancer" and "The Tree Of Life". It is the final painting in the series and features a couple embracing. "Fulfillment" is also known as "The Embrace" for that reason.
Each mosaic is a landscape painting, depicting natural forms such as trees. Klimt is known for beautiful abstraction and colour. All of the mosaics have rich golden hues. These are well balanced throughout the painting, so they are not overwhelming. Viewers will be able to appreciate the beauty of each shade as the shifts are subtle, pleasing the senses as the artist draws attention to different parts of the scene.
The Stoclet Frieze is unique because it was the only landscape the artist finished during the Golden Era. All sorts of luxurious materials were used to decorate each piece. These include semi-precious stones, pearls, marble, gilded tiles, enamel and ceramic tiles.
Fulfillment, "The Dancer" and "The Tree Of Life" were all commissioned by Adolphe and Suzanne Stoclet. Adolphe Stoclet was a Belgian financier and the couple avidly collected eclectic artwork. They wanted to build a spacious mansion with their own formal garden. The couple also hired an artistic collective, the Wiener Werkstatte and their famous founder, architect Josef Hoffman to help them create their dream home.
By hiring the production company, Mr and Mrs. Stoclet ensured that each piece in their home would be progressive in nature. They liked art from different cultures and their collection included Egyptian sculptures. Their diverse tastes ideally suited Gustav Klimt, whose own interests overlapped with theirs.
The panels he completed were installed in their dining room. Three different walls were utilised with the two larger pieces positioned to face each other. When the Stoclet Palace was completed, it was considered a symbol of the Vienna Succession. Artists saw it as a beacon which encompassed Art Nouveau ideals.
Even the lines of the Stoclet Palace spoke of modernity and gave a hint as to what could be expected inside. Its asymmetrical lines and exaggerated form were distinctive and ahead of the time. Klimt did not only work on the Fulfillment Stoclet Frieze and other mosaics for the dining room. He also helped to design the mansion. He and Hoffman shared a similar vision. With Adolphe and Suzanne Stoclet, they pushed for new standards in art.
The Fulfillment Stoclet Frieze complemented the clean lines of the Stoclet Palace beautifully. Along with Japanese elements, Klimt's work nods to his patrons by including elements of Byzantine art. Triangular leaves and circular flowers used through all three pieces are found in sacred stories of different cultures. Some experts think that the sprouting vegetation and embrace in Fulfillment speaks of an Egyptian myth involving Osiris and Isis.