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Venus in the Grotto, c. 1914

Leopold Museum,
Oil on canvas
149.4×99 cm


  • Koloman Moser

    (Vienna 1868–1918 Vienna)

Currently on display at OG4
Koloman Moser (1868–1918) explored the composition of his work Venus in the Grotto over an extended period of time, as documented by the existence of various drafts and variations of this motif. Venus appears to us within the hollow of a rock, and surrounded by an open veil that covers no more than a part of her legs. The artist rendered her naked and in colors which no longer correspond to nature, using chrome yellow for the heightened areas and pale purple for the shadows. For the surrounding veil, the artist chose yellow ocher and light blue, while rendering the rocks in a greenish blue and ocher. In the lower right corner he added a bouquet of flowers. Moser achieved an impressive harmony of colors in this rendering. The artist created a version of his work [The Hiker] (/en/object/583) with exactly the same measurements, which he apparently intended as a counterpart to this painting.

Object data

  • Koloman Moser
Venus in the Grotto
c. 1914
Art movement
Classical Modernism
Oil on canvas
149.4×99 cm
Monogrammed lower right
Credit line
Leopold Museum, Vienna, Inv. 1999. Patron Elisabeth Paveza
Inventory access
Contributed to the Leopold Museum-Privatstiftung in 1994
Selection of Reference works
  • Wien 1900. Aufbruch in die Moderne, hrsg. von Hans-Peter Wipplinger, Wien 2019 (Ausst.-Kat. Leopold Museum, Wien, ab 15.03.2019).
  • Koloman Moser- Die Sammlung Leopold, hrsg. von Elisabeth Leopold/Stefan Kutzenberger, Wien 2018 (Ausst.-Kat. Leopold Museum, Wien, 18.01.2018-10.06.2018).
  • Koloman Moser 1868-1818, hrsg. von Rudolf Leopold/Gerd Pichler, Wien 2007 (Ausst.-Kat. Leopold Museum, Wien, 25.05.2007-10.09.2007).

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Provenance research
Leopold Museum i

Nachlass Koloman Moser, Wien;
Editha Hauska, Wien (1918);
Kunstverlag Wolfrum, Wien (1920); (1)
Dr. Rudolf Leopold, Wien (o.D.); (2)
Leopold Museum-Privatstiftung, Wien (1994).

  1. Kunstverlag Wolfrum, Katalog zu “Kolo Moser-Nachlass-Ausstellung”, Wien 1920, Nr. 164 „Venus in der Felsengrotte“
  2. Gerd Pichler, Eberhard Kohlbacher (Hg.), Koloman Moser. Die Gemälde, Wien 2012, S. 150, WV 157.

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