Considered one of the most iconic sculptures of the modern era, The Kiss by Constantin Brancusi was first unveiled in 1912. It is said to mark the birth of modernist forms in sculpture, exploring non-literal representations and stylized contours. The sculpture depicts two figures embracing each other in a passionate kiss that dissolves their identities into pure form.
Brancusi created six versions of The Kiss between 1907 and 1908, with each iteration exhibiting slight variations. The fourth version, known as “The Smooth” or “The Column”, remains widely regarded as having achieved the highest degree of formal unity among all versions.
As an artist, Brancusi was heavily influenced by African, Assyrian, and Egyptian art which are reflected in his use of materials and textures such as limestone or marble – often polished to a high gloss finish that highlights simplicity over detail. In this way, he sought to express underlying emotional themes rather than create realistic reproductions.
Displayed at the Armory Show in New York City in 1913 alongside works by artists like Picasso and Matisse – places its significance firmly within its social context as a radical artistic response to changing times. Today it remains an important piece both for art historians studying Modernism and for those who appreciate its timeless beauty.