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Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Hope II

Gustav Klimt. (Austrian, 1862-1918).
Hope, II. 1907-08.
Oil, gold, and platinum on canvas, 43 1/2 x 43 1/2" (110.5 x 110.5 cm).
The Museum of Modern Art, New York


A pregnant woman bows her head and closes her eyes, as if praying for the safety of her child. Peeping out from behind her stomach is a death's head, sign of the danger she faces.

At her feet, three women with bowed heads raise their hands, presumably also in prayer—although their solemnity might also imply mourning, as if they foresaw the child's fate.