Egon Schiele is a bright and extraordinary representative of Austrian expressionism. A talented graphic artist and painter, Egon Schiele created drawings and canvases in the nude genre, which, despite the presence of a naked body, cannot be called erotic. Almost all of his portraits are united by a depressive mood – these are dry, almost emaciated torsos, broken lines of limbs, unhealthy skin color. Even his rare landscapes are deserted, lifeless and poignantly dreary.
Childhood and studies Egon Schiele
Egon Schiele was born on June 12, 1890 into the family of the head of the railway station in the small Austrian town of Tulln. At a young age, he became interested in drawing, and his first drawings were about the railway – he liked the sparkling rails, semaphores and powerful locomotives.
Egon Schiele loved his father, who left the family early – he contracted syphilis, went mad and died in 1905. After a forced move to his uncle and worries due to too short mourning and his mother’s second marriage, the young man went into a protracted depression that did not let him go until the end of his life.
Uncle, Leopold Cichachek, wanted to provide his nephew with a good education. However, Egon did not hide his indifference to study and love of drawing. In 1906 he left for Vienna, where he entered the art school. Less than a year later, he moved to the Academy of Arts, at the age of 16 becoming its youngest student. Three years later, he was expelled from the academy for “debauchery”. Schiele, who was marked by promiscuous personal relationships, justified himself that this was the only opportunity to truly feel the model.
Left without money and studies, he undertook to draw pictures of a pornographic nature. In this he succeeded and soon began to rent a separate apartment with his own studio. And he began to create paintings for the first exhibition, to which he was invited by Gustav Klimt.
Schiele met Klimt while studying at the academy, where he became the master’s favorite student. Egon even imitated the teacher in his first works. Take a closer look at the paintings of “Danay” by Schiele and Klimt. A lot of common details, right?
For a 19-year-old aspiring artist, it was an incredible fortune to exhibit in the same room with famous artists. He became famous and actively participated in art exhibitions. When Klimt died, the young Egon Schiele took the place of honor as the main artist of Austria.
Many women have been in Egon Schiele’s bed, but only two were the most important in life – Wally Neuzil and Edith Harms. He met Valli in Klimt’s workshop. She was 17 years old, she became Egon’s first true love and the reason for his imprisonment. In 1912, the police, at the behest of neighbors, arrested Schiele on charges of molesting a minor and making pornography. However, the artist did not stay long in prison.
And then Egon met Edith Harms, broke ties with Wally and married the daughter of a locksmith. 4 days after the wedding, he was drafted into the army. He returned to his young wife a few months before his death from the Spanish flu. First, the disease took the pregnant Edith, and three days later, 28-year-old Egon died.