From 1912 to 1918, the final seven years of his life, Gustav Klimt worked in a cottage just outside of Vienna. It was in the countryside (though now the area has been developed) surrounded by fruit trees and a garden. The studio has fallen into disrepair and until November 2007 it was slated for demolition. That is until the Belvedere stepped in. The government of Austria has agreed to a nearly $3 million renovation (not that much money when you imagine how much is made from Klimt related merchandise) which will restore the cottage to its appearance in 1918. The building will be used as a Klimt museum where, among other things, visitors will be able to see the furniture the artist used when in the cottage.
This renovation is a great thing. Imagine standing in the very room where Klimt created his masterpieces, looking through the window at what he saw while he worked. It is not possible to visit studios of many of the great artists. The example that comes to mind is Vincent van Gogh’s yellow house in Arles which was destroyed in WWII.
For more information about the restoration of Klimt’s studio check out the art newspaper. At the site there is a much more detailed article than mine and includes a photo of the inside of the studio.
To see a picture of what the cottage looks like today, visit Art2u. You'll find a nice image along with an opinion on the upcoming restoration that you may find interesting. Keep in mind that the cottage was only one story when Klimt worked there and the upper floor will be removed.
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