February 5th, 2013

High “Expectation” for Second Klimt Coin

The Austrian Mint will issue the second coin in its five-gold-coin series celebrating Gustav Klimt, a key painter of the art nouveau period whose art is recognized and admired around the world.

The obverse features the “Tree of Life” from the Stoclet frieze, is framed by a square of the artist’s canvas, and was conceptualized by the mint’s chief engraver, Thomas Pesendorfer. The tree is made up of many fine swirls and mosaic-like pieces commonly found in Klimt’s art. To the right of the Tree of Life, a falcon symbolizing the Eye of Horus. Also on this side appears the country of issue, “Republik Oesterreich” or Republic of Austria, the face value of 50 euros, and the year of issue, 2013.

The reverse features a portion of the frieze “Expectation,” showing the head of a woman anxiously looking to the right. The scarf on her head has a very intricate geometric pattern. Her hand is held in a pose found commonly in Egyptian paintings. Her wrist has a beautiful armband, while more jewels and geometric shapes and swirls can be seen in her clothing. The reverse of the coin was conceived and engraved by mint engraver Herbert Waehner.

The Stoclet frieze was a special commission that Gustav Klimt received from Adolphe Stoclet, a wealthy industrialist of Brussels, Belgium. Stoclet was an avid art collector who also commissioned the architect Josef Hoffman. Klimt was commissioned to create a masterpiece in the dining room. The wealth and appreciation of the art nouveau movement by Stoclet meant that no boundaries were placed on the art nor on the budget of this now world heritage site, the Stoclet House in Brussels.

Klimt completed two intricate paintings on the dining room walls, one of which was the well-known “Expectation” featured on this gold coin. The “Expectation” is that of the young lady, who is a dancer, anxiously looking to the right, and yearning for love. (Another part of the frieze completes the search for love depicting a young couple embracing, and therefore is known as “Fulfillment.”)

The very complex and meaningful “Tree of Life” is symbolic of our roots deep in the ground, stretching up to the sky and the heavens. The Klimt “Tree of Life” bears both flowers and fruit and thereby symbolically includes both women and men, on their own, as well as together – bearing fruit.

The gold coins of this series illustrate the importance of women in Gustav Klimt’s artistic life.  The coins present his work in a manner similar to an exhibition.  Each of the coins will have another letter of his name K-L-I-M-T worked into the design – so that once the series is complete his last name will become part of the signature of the 5 coin series.

2012 Adele Bloch Bauer:  Letter K

2013 “Expectation”: Letter L

2014 “Judith II”: Letter I

2015 Hygieia from the “Faculty Paintings” of the University of Vienna: Letter M

2016 “The Kiss”: Letter T

The new coin is struck in 986 fine gold to a maximum mintage of 30,000 pieces in proof quality only. It contains 10 grams of fine gold. Each coin is packed in an attractive box with a numbered certificate of authenticity, which provides detailed background and technical information about the quality and design of the coin.

A beautiful wooden collection case for the whole series, “Klimt and his Women”, may be purchased separately. It contains a booklet explaining the whole series.

Collectors in the United States and Canada may purchase the “Expectation” coin by calling Euro Collections International toll-free at 1 877 897 7696. The coin may also be ordered online at www.eurocollections.com

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