Unknown Klimt art piece found in Budapest

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The relief – advertising Vienna piano manufacture Ehrbar – is made of plaster and hand-painted in gold. It was found in a downtown Budapest apartment which previously functioned as a piano salon, said architect and interior designer György Selmeczi, who made the discovery.

Ehrbar relief
Ehrbar relief by Gustav Klimt (Photo: MTI/Zoltán Máthé)

The relief – made between 1890 and 1892 – has been hanging on the same wall for over a century. Selmeczi said that the relief was probably commissioned by the Austrian piano maker’s Hungarian distributor for the 1896 celebrations of 1,000 years of Hungary’s foundation.

He said the relief was by all indications designed by Gustav Klimt and made by one of Klimt’s brothers, either Georg or Ernst. It has many distinctive elements of Klimt’s art – such as wave lines, a laurel wreath and a lyre – and finished in gold, which became the hallmark of Klimt’s subsequent creations.

It also closely resembles a later Klimt work, the so-called Beethoven frieze.

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