Schiele started his artistic career with Gustav Klimt as his mentor, which has clearly had some sort of effect on his work. They had a close relationship, and shared artistic influences and techniques. Both created figurative drawing’s with elongated bodies and quite an erotic nature- although Schiele takes this a lot further in his work.
Schiele’s work differed to Klimt’s when he began creating a plethora of self-portraits and focused his attention away from the decorative style that Klimt displays. The paintings Schiele created were very psychological and prolific. His work included mostly nude people, and often quite raw and grotesque figures. There’s a large amount of distortion and manipulation to his self-portraits which may be symbolic to his state of mind. Schiele’s creations were very ahead of his time, being in the very early 1900’s and he was exploring his conscience and presenting notions of ugliness and eroticism; in the 1900’s art was mainly focused around notions of conventional beauty. His raw emotion he displayed in his work overpowered the traditional need of beauty in art.
There’s something about Schiele’s artwork that really draws me in- he manages to put so much emotive language in the marks and the tones he uses whilst keeping it quite controlled inside the black defining lines. I feel like his work is confrontational- his self-portraits have an unsettling gaze, almost menacing in some; while some have a confrontational feel in the, to me, quite shocking portrayal of the body (they are very sexually suggestive).
He depicts himself so honestly which is interesting to view- to read his artistic language of how he feels and sees himself.