Completed in 1907, the painting took longer than any of Klimt’s other works to finish and features the only model to be painted more than once by the Viennese master – the wife of wealthy industrialist and patron of the arts Ferdinand Bloch-Bauer. Ethereal and enigmatic, the portrait was created from oils and gold leaf, which is why it has been possible to reproduce it so magnificently on the reverse of this 50 euro gold coin. The elaborate Jugendstil ornamentation of the painting’s background provides an intricate contrast to the smoother relief of the subject’s head in the foreground. A handsome portrait of the artist himself is reproduced in profile on the coin’s obverse to similar effect.
Struck in Proof quality with a maximum mintage of 30,000, each coin comes in a case complete with a numbered certificate of authenticity. A superb wooden presentation case is also available for those keen to complete the entire five-coin Klimt and his Women collection.