Talk 171 at The Wilson: The Agony & The Ecstasy – Klimt and Schiele Reborn

Date(s) - 28th Jan 2019

The Wilson



The 2018 commemorates the centenaries of two doyens of Modernism, in Gustav Klimt and Egon Schiele. Both Viennese Secessionists prolific at the fin de siècle, artistically they couldn’t be more disparate. Klimt’s ethereal depictions of amorous liaisons are more akin to the English Decadent Movement as pioneered by J.A.M. Whistler and E.W. Godwin in their erotic languor and use of opulent materials. Klimt’s father, a Viennese gold engraver, encouraged his son to explore further the Byzantine mosaics of Ravenna and Venice, which accounts for his penchant for resplendent materials in his artworks.

The artistic eroticism of the female form links both Klimt and Schiele as pioneering practitioners of this fervent period in art, yet the latter eschewed any sense of his guru’s glamour, in favour of a scratchy and nervous linearity of style which has found a Renaissance in Tracey Emin. Schiele’s obsessions with voyeurism and scopophilia (voyeurism) limited his audience to the esoteric – his inimitable etiolated and emaciated figures make us squirm even today in a society ostensibly uncensored – whilst making him a progenitor of Modern German Expressionism also.

This talk coincides with the Drawings from the Albertina Museum, Vienna exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts until 3 February.

Our speaker, Nick Nelson is Head of History of Art at Cheltenham College. He is co-founder of Arcadia Education for Art History established in 2014.

  • Cost: £15 for buffet lunch and talk, £8.00 for talk only.
  • Doors open for the buffet from 12:15pm, speaker 1pm-2pm
  • Bookings close 20th January (lunch and talk) or 27th January (talk only).

If you have any questions, please email or ring Alison on 01242 519413.

Otherwise book your place by using the form below.  

There are three payment options:

1. You can pay by credit or debit card, as well as by PayPal, using the PayPal option (default).  If there are sufficient spaces still available this will automatically confirm your booking if the payment is accepted.

2. If you want to pay by cheque select the Off-line option from the payment methods but please send your cheque as soon as possible as your booking will not be confirmed until we have received the payment.

3. If you really don’t like filling in forms on-screen you can download a form, print it and post it with a cheque. A booking form can also be found in the Friends Newsletter (available January 2019). 

Cheques should be payable to Friends of The Wilson and sent with a sae or clearly written email address to Mrs Alison Pascoe, 77 Naunton Lane, Cheltenham, GL53 7AZ.



This event is fully booked, but if you would like to be added to our waiting list please email