How Did the Visionary Yves Klein Change Contemporary Art?

"....First there is nothing, then there is a deep nothing, and then there is a deep blue."

Gaston Bachelard, ‘Air and Dreams’, 1944

Dry pigment and synthetic resin on gauze mounted on panel 59 x 78 inch. © The Estate of Yves Klein c/o ADAGP, Paris

There are few figures in contemporary art that have made pivotal changes with their works. Amongst more well known figures such as Andy Warhol and Duchamp, Yves Klein is relatively unknown.

Appartement de Robert Godet 9, rue Le-Regrattier, Île Saint-Louis, Paris, France © Photo : All rights reserved © Artwork : The Estate of Yves Klein c/o ADAGP, Paris
  1. Conceptual Art
  2. Minimal Art
  3. Light and Space Art
  4. Installation Art
  5. Performance Art

So many of these forms of art were first done by Yves Klein, essentially, he redefined art to what is now commonplace in contemporary art. Moving away from the canvas or what is obviously seen, a more “still life“ approach that was commonplace before this. Without the influence of Yves Klein, the world of contemporary art might look very different today.


Klein is best known for his patented International Klein Blue. He worked with a Parisian art paint supplier to develop this shade of blue - ultramarine pigment suspended in a matte synthetic resin binder, which allows the colour intensity to be preserved and bounces the light to show a true ultramarine blue.

For Yves Klein, blue connects the ocean and the sky, blue has depth and dimensions, vibrations that viscerally invokes a reaction. It is not safe, it is not comfortable, it is made to provoke, to create a variation of responses when you sit in their presence.

Read more about how Yves Klein used the IKB as a vehicle, a medium for him to explore the terrain of art expression.


Lladró has always championed a sense of utopia in their pieces. Bringing forward Yves Klein’s philosophy, they’ve used his signature International Klein Blue on animal pieces, focusing on the details that have otherwise been overlooked if these pieces were in colour.

The deep matt blue brings out the texture of each animal and the surface of the porcelain. Each bump and crevice is much more noticeable, highlighting the precision and realism of Lladró capability in creating sculptures. The pieces have an immense presence with their bold and striking colour, dabbed with small touches of Lladró’s signature 24-karat gold lustre drawing the eye to a few key features.

Lladró now adds the Little Monkey to the Bold Blue collection, with other pieces such as Gorilla already retired in 2022 and the Penguin Family close to sold out.

Newest addition to the collection: Little Monkey!


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