The Ten Largest, No. 3, Youth, Group IV (quick-ship)

by Hilma af Klint

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Artist Statement

In the 1890s, Hilma af Klint began meeting regularly with a group of female artists who together became known as “The Five”. The Five practiced various forms of spiritualism, believing they could communicate with a higher consciousness. Af Klint thought herself directed by this otherworldly force to create a group of paintings called The Ten Largest for “The Temple”, an entity never wholly defined or understood. Standing at a colossal 10 feet high and 8 feet wide, each painting in the series represents a different phase of life from early childhood to old age.

No. 3 depicts the transitional period of youth. Tonally, the series moves through a clear cycle of stylistic progression. While the early childhood works appear rather cellular with an emphasis on biological forms, youth is bright and dynamic. With swirling movement and colorful clusters of organic shapes, No. 3 is less diagrammatic than the more meditative, No. 7, Adulthood. Here, youth flourishes in a state of flux. Stylistically unbound by the artistic conventions of the time, No. 3 is one of the first examples of abstract art.

Why We Love It

We’re excited to add No. 3 to the mix because it fleshes out more of the astonishingly considered, idiosyncratic ways af Klint communicated via the conduit of her paintbrush. No. 3 is less diagrammatic than No. 7, with just a localized appearance of letterforms and no roman numerals. Its bright orange background seems to swell like a full vein, churning with colorful circular shapes and the snail-shell spirals and swirls af Klint often used to signify growth, or evolution of a metaphysical flavor. Whereas No. 7 incorporates some more established-feeling elements, No. 3 is very much in flux ... Read more on the blog + an excerpt from Christine Burgin's Hilma af Klint: Notes and Methods


+ This Quick Ship artwork ships in one business day.
+ This edition is not eligible for discount.
+ Limited-edition, exclusive to 20x200
+ Museum quality: archival inks, 100% cotton rag paper unless noted
+ Handcrafted custom-framing is not available.

Our quoted dimensions are for the size of paper containing the images, not the printed image itself. We do not alter the aspect ratio, nor do we crop or resize the artists’ originals. All of our prints have a minimum border of .5 inches to allow for framing.


Museo Portfolio Rag

Edition Structure:
14"x11" | edition of 250

Hilma af Klint

Hilma af Klint (1862-1944) was a Swedish artist and spiritualist whose colossal works have become known as some of the first examples of abstract art. With an early interest in visual art, mathematics, and botany, af Klint attended the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Stockholm where she excelled in landscape painting and portraiture. While making a living off commission from these conventional endeavors, af Klint became greatly involved in various forms of spiritualism including Anthroposophy, Theosophy, and Rosicrucianism. In the 1890s, she met four other female artists—together, they would become known as “The Five”. The Five met regularly, believing... Read More
they could communicate with a higher consciousness. These beliefs heavily influenced and even “directed” af Klint’s work. She created her first series of abstract works in 1906, predating other artists such as Kandinsky and Mondrian, who are often regarded as the “pioneers of abstraction”. Soon she began to develop a more intentional and independent expression of her ideas, incorporating biomorphic forms, mathematical proportions, and vibrant hues. Af Klint kept her abstract work hidden from her contemporaries, believing the art world was unready to fully understand it. Stipulating that it remain secret until 20 years after her death, her work was largely unknown until the 1980s. Af Klint painted for a future audience, one willing to embrace a female pioneer in the field and the holistic nature of her work.  
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