Nepenthe’s Kiss

A visual interpretation of @lacyrosemusic’s forthcoming album, “Ria”, itself a meditation on three paintings of Gustav Klimt of Ria Munk. Ria was unlucky in love – her fiancé, a ne-er do well poet twice her age, broke off their engagement and poor heartbroken Ria took her own life, shooting herself in the chest.

Her mother hired Gustav Klimt to paint her daughter’s posthumous portrait. The first portrait portrayed Ria as “too dead,” complained her mother. The second was too sensuous, as it depicted Ria’s robe hanging open, revealing her breasts. And, perhaps fittingly, Gustav Klimt died before he could finish the third. Ria’s smiling face is painted looking at the viewer, and flowers creep into her frame from the background, but her robe and body are left unfinished, Klimt’s charcoal sketch lines the final remnant of Ria’s body.

I’ve tried to paint Ria’s anguish, and by leaving a few charcoal lines visible, suggest the wistful kind of eternity that only unfinished business can bring.

You can hear a preview of Ria’s sister album, Mizzi, here. Ria will be released very soon!: https://lacyrose.bandcamp.com/album/mizzi

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