Gustav Klimt’s portrait of 9-year-old Mäda Primavesi is a striking depiction of a confident and poised young girl. The painting was completed in 1912 and shows Mäda dressed in an elaborate, floral dress with her hands calmly resting on her lap. The direct gaze and upright posture are unusual for a child’s portrait, adding to the elegant and mature feel of the work.
Mäda came from a wealthy Viennese family who were patrons of the arts. Klimt sketched her many times “from life” before creating this portrait, ensuring that he captured every detail with precision. Mäda’s parents also commissioned a similar portrait of Eugenia Primavesi by Klimt, which further demonstrates their appreciation for fine art.
The painting reflects Mäda’s privileged upbringing, complete with opulent clothing and surroundings. However, it also exudes a sense of innocence and wonder that befits her age. Klimt used bold colors and intricate patterns to create a fairy-tale-like atmosphere around Mada that perfectly encapsulates the spirit of childhood.
Overall, Klimt’s portrait of Mäda Primavesi is not only a masterpiece in its own right but also serves as testament to the artist’s exceptional talent when it comes to capturing his subjects’ personalities on canvas.