Egon Schiele

Eroticism or Pornography?

In my opinion Schiele was mainly a good illustrator, who "painted" his pictures afterwards. I can only deplore that his "daubing" finally helped to get the expressionism on its way. But, differing from the expressionists, Schiele had the ability to give his paintings an expression ...

Best known is Schiele for his paintings of nudes. Are these works erotic or pornographic?
Well, I don't cry out loud when I see a naked body, far from it, I find it aesthetically and pleasing - but I do agree, that Schiele is near the borderline. One should not forget, though, that Schiele only was given 28 years of living, and that a man's libido is strongest in his youth. But the picture of his Eros, showing a man masturbating, and the spread legs of his nude models surely is not the art you would like to show your children. In those cases I ask myself sometimes, where the artistic message is ...
Of course, they proclaimed "to art - its freedom", which certainly has got a point. But then you must concede to the public the freedom of drawing its own borders and to dislike certain forms of "art".

Click on a thumbnail to see a larger picture.

Stylised flowers
House with shingle-roof
The family
Nude at right
Lying woman
Three standing women
The City of Stein
Lying female nude
The bend of houses

Important facts from the artists life:

June 12th, 1890: Born in Tulln near Vienna
1905: His father's death after a mental disease
1907: First contacts with Klimt and the "Secession" in Vienna
1909: Establishment of the "Neukunstgruppe" (the Group of New Art)
1910 - 1911: Living in Krumau. Many works of nudes
1912: Three days imprisonment because of the spreading of impure drawings. Graphic documentation of his detention. Expositions in Vienna, Munich, Cologne and other places
1913: Many international expositions. Becomes member of the "Bund Österreichischer Künstler" (Union of Austrian Artists). Works for the magazine "Die Aktion" (The Mission) in Berlin
1915: Separation from Wally Neuzil after four years of relationship
June 17th, 1915: Marries Edith Harms
1916: More expositions. "Die Aktion" publishes an edition about Schiele
March 1918: Big success at the exhibition in the Secession in Vienna
October 31st, 1918: Three days after his spouse Egon Schiele dies of the Spanish Influenza

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last update: 4.12.2004 by