Klimt’s “Danae” depicts a Woman from the Classic myth, being seduced by god Jupiter (Zeus). The sleeping figure of Danae coils up to meet and embrace the fall of golden rain symbolizing Jupiter. The parted lips and legs, the closed eyes, the rolled down stocking on her ankle, the reddish hair and diaphanous purple veil are all indicative of Danae’s particular sensual experience. Nearly quarter of the picture is taken up by Danae’s thigh… ornament and rich coloring serve to diffuse the viewers’ attention from the exposed pose of the woman.

Klimt complicates Zeus’s stream of golden coins with “early embryonic forms identified by scientists several decades later as ‘chromosome-like’ ‘gilded spermatozoa’ and ‘spheres of embryonic cells: blastocysts (layer of cells surrounding the cavity that hovers above a lump of cells – the source of embryonic stem cells that will eventually divide to form the fetal anatomy)’” – New Scientist.com – “Gustav Klimt’s mysterious embryos”, Nov. 3, 2010.

Gustav Klimt, “Danae”, 1907 (“golden coins” are obvious in this version of “Danae”)

Gustav Klimt, “Danae”, 1907 (In this version you can easier notice the strange forms, some other substances in between the “golden coins”)

Gustav Klimt, “Danae”, 1907 (In this version of “Danae” every viewer will be able to detect the “other forms” beside the “golden coins” between Danae’s thighs)

The passionate dependence on men’s gaze enslaves women, puts them in a “junior” position of trying to prove to men the value of feminine existence. In our “honorable” patriarchal tradition women supposed to dream about men and in certain psychological situations to fantasize about them. When this happens, women are fantasizing about men-embodied, not, as men do, about women’s bodies. In a mutational moment when a woman (personified by Danae) had chosen Zeus over men, she is already in the kingdom of the flowing “golden coins” with her own hormonal substances in between, not in men’s world.

Man’s evaluating gaze is slavery of woman. But Danae is caressing the flowing emanation – the current of her own orgasmic sensation. It’s her left hand produces her sensation, and it is her right hand embraces not only her breast and not the imaginary penis, but rather her golden and godly sensations. But what, indeed, does she see under her convulsively pressed eyelids? – She sees-senses-feels her Zeus-orgasm.

Klimt’s improbable, impossible painting is not about Zeus-the rapist and Danae as the victim of rape and not about Gods’ magic of multiple reincarnations. It’s about the creative discovery by a woman of her own magnificently sensual body (instead of using men’s tulip-tool as a mediator of this discovery). Instead of worshipping the gold (instead of participating in both genders’ cult of the metal of yellow greed) Danae, to use the language of fairy-tales, is the sexual revolutionary. She transformed her own body into the mountain of sensual gold.

Does every woman have to limit herself to Danae’s sexual experiences? But does every man have to play with women Zeus/Jupiter? Of course, not. But this is tremendous that Danae (with the help of Zeus named Gustav Klimt) was able to do what she did.