Skip Menu. Navigate to content in this page
Accessibility Assistance, opens A D A page

Yves Klein Blue: Art History Meets Décor

Photograph and signature of Artist Yves Klein

Do you have a piece of art history on your walls? It’s more likely than you think—look around for blue canvas prints. Read on to learn the lineage and find out if you have one of the world’s most famous hues,  International Klein Blue.

"The power of a single blue painting to stay in ones imagination for ones lifetime, that's quite something. There are not many things that leave such a vivid impression. Once you see an Yves Klein painting, you'll never forget it." -Michael Craig-Martin

The Master of Blue

French Conceptual Artist Yves Klein is most remembered for his trademarked ultramarine blue pigment.

While every artist is either enamored by vivid colors or simply detests it in preference for a black and white palette, Yves Klein became quite consumed and now known for a certain hue of blue. As the story goes, Klein was inspired by the deep blue skies of the French Mediterranean— a blue that he later patented and trademarked ‘International Klein Blue’ (IKB).

Photograph of the Mediterranean sky.
Photograph of the Mediterranean sky, Klein's inspiration.

An exhibition of Klein’s identical signature monochrome works, shown in Milan in 1957, shifted the trajectory of his career. This show led to what Klein called “The Blue Revolution.” Soon after he began to cover all sorts of objects in this blue hue from roman inspired busts, household sponges, globes and objects found in nature.

Photographs of two of Yves Klein's work showcased in a museum.
Left: The New Blue Right: Sponge Relief by Yves Klein

When asked why blue? What is blue? Klein answered “Blue is the invisible becoming visible. Blue has no dimensions, it is beyond the dimensions of which other colors partake, all colors arouse specific associative ideas, psychologically material or tangible, while blue suggests at most the sea and sky, and they, after all, are in actual, visible nature what is most abstract.”

Photograph of IKB Inspired art in a framed print in a modern dining room.
Left: Blue Majestic by Farrell Douglass Right: Cursive by Clayton Rabo

Yves Klein became a thought leader in the Nouveau Realist era of the 1960s. Although Klein’s career was short— dying at the age of 34—International Klein Blue remains modern, powerful and highly influential. And it can become a gorgeous dimension in your own home décor with an IKB inspired curated collection, filled with contemporary abstracted compositions which carry on the heritage of Klein’s blue color theory.