Austrian expressionist artist Egon Schiele b.1890 Tuln Austria was the first artist I researched when I was at University. Doing lots of Life drawing and looking round to see which sort of art influenced me his work soon caught my eye. Like many art students I bought the series of Taschen art books that were and still are available. I still have these books, they are excellent resources – and I have nearly all of them! The books are so informative, the illustrations so clear and colourful, and very reasonably priced.
I have meant to write about this artist for quite a while. One of his paintings, stolen by the Nazis and in the centre of a 12 year dispute was reported in this article today. It makes interesting reading.
As a child Schiele was not academically inclined but his uncle, who became his guardian recognised his talent for art and sent him to the Vienna Academy of Fine arts when he was 16. He became a good friend of Gustave Klimt whose work influenced and inspired him. Schiele explored sexuality through the human form, using expressionistic body shapes in twisting and contorted positions.
When Shciele moved to Neulengbach he was arrested and jailed briefly for seducing an underage girl. The artist seems to have courted controversy throughout his life style through his art his lifestyle and his choice of young models. He did serve in World War 1 and was well respected as an artist, though he never saw any fighting. He continued his career after the war and exhibited 50 works for the 49th Secession exhibition in Vienna 1917. He died of the Spanish epidemic in 1918, he was only 28 years old. I often wonder what sort of art he would have produced if he had lived longer. He was a prolific worker and has left us a legacy of his fine work.
All images from the Egon Shiele excellent website Here
Mini biography of this artist here