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                Art Nouveau
                Art Nouveau name origins
                Bing's Maison de l'Art Nouveau
                Jugend and Jugendstil
                Art Nouveau other names
                Art Nouveau Origins
                Character of Art Nouveau
                Geography of Art Nouveau
                Art Nouveau in Belgium, Switzerland and France
                Art Nouveau in Germany and Austria
                Art Nouveau in Britain
                Art Nouveau in Hungary
                Art Nouveau in Spain
                Art Nouveau in Czech and Bohemia
                Art Nouveau in Eastern Europe
                Art Nouveau and decorative arts
                Art Nouveau and other contemporary styles and movements

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                Art Nouveau Collection Info

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                Art Nouveau
                The Art Nouveau movement was established as the first new decorative style of the 20th century at the 1900 World’s Fair in Paris. Art Nouveau  is an international movement and style of art, architecture and the decorative arts. Art Nouveau that in popularity at the turn of the 20th century 1890–1910. The name 'Art Nouveau' is French for 'new art'. It is also known as Jugendstil, German for 'youth style', named after the magazine Jugend, which promoted it, and in Italy, Stile Liberty from the department store in London, Liberty & Co., which popularised the style. A reaction to academic art of the 19th century, it is characterized by organic, especially floral and other plant-inspired motifs, as well as highly stylized, flowing curvilinear forms. Art Nouveau is an approach to design according to which artists should work on everything from architecture to furniture, making art part of everyday life. In design Art Nouveau was characterized by writhing plant forms and an opposition to the historicism which had plagued the 19th century.
                The movement was strongly influenced by Czech artist Alphonse Mucha, when Mucha produced a lithographed poster, which appeared on 1 January 1895 in the streets of Paris as an advertisement for the play Gismonda by Victorien Sardou, starring Sarah Bernhardt. It was an overnight sensation, and announced the new artistic style and its creator to the citizens of Paris. Initially called the Style Mucha, (Mucha Style), this soon became known as Art Nouveau.
                Art Nouveau was most strongly felt throughout Europe - from Glasgow to Moscow to Madrid - but its influence was global. In France, Hector Guimard's metro entrances shaped the landscape of Paris and Emile Gallé was at the center of the school of thought in Nancy. Victor Horta had a decisive impact on architecture in Belgium. Magazines like Jugend helped spread the style in Germany, especially as a graphic art form, while the Vienna Secessionists influenced art and architecture throughout Austria-Hungary. Art Nouveau was also a movement of distinct individuals such as Gustav Klimt, Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Alphonse Mucha, René Lalique, Antoni Gaudí and Louis Comfort Tiffany. Art Nouveau fell out of favour with the arrival of 20th-century modernist styles and it is seen today as an important bridge between the historicism of Neoclassicism and modernism. Art Nouveau monuments are now recognized as significant contributions to cultural heritage.

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                Art Nouveau name origins
                At its beginning, neither Art Nouveau nor Jugendstil was the common name of the style, and the style adopted different labels as it spread between artistic centres. Those two names came from, respectively, Samuel Bing's gallery Maison de l'Art Nouveau in Paris and the magazine Jugend in Munich, both of which promoted and popularised the style. A high point in the evolution of Art Nouveau was the Exposition Universelle of 1900 in Paris, which presented an overview of the 'modern style' in every medium. It achieved further recognition at the Esposizione Internazionale d'Arte Decorativa Moderna of 1902 in Turin, Italy, where designers exhibited from almost every European country where Art Nouveau was practised.

                Bing's Maison de l'Art Nouveau
                Maison de l'Art Nouveau (House of New Art) was the name of the gallery opened in 1895 by the German art dealer Samuel Bing in Paris that marked his exclusive focus on modern art. The fame of his gallery was increased at the 1900 Exposition Universelle, where he presented coordinated - in design and color - installations of modern furniture, tapestries and objets d'art. These fully realised decorative displays became so strongly associated with the style that the name of his gallery subsequently provided a commonly used term for the entire style: Art Nouveau.

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                Jugend and Jugendstil
                In the late 19th century there was an artistic Renaissance in southern Germany, led by the artists and designers of the Jugendstil movement in the area around Munich. The driving force of the Jugendstil movement was the magazine Munchner Jugend which made extensive use of the illustrations and designs of German Art Nouveau artists, including black and white and tinted illustrations, hand lettering and even architectural and furniture design. Jugend: Münchner illustrierte Wochenschrift für Kunst und Leben (English: Youth: the illustrated weekly magazine of art and lifestyle of Munich) was a magazine founded in 1896 by Georg Hirth. At the height of Art Nouveau, the magazine was instrumental in promoting the style in Germany. As a result, its name was adopted as the most common German-language term for the movement: Jugendstil ("Jugend-style"). In the early 20th century, the word was applied to only two-dimensional examples of the graphic arts, especially the forms of organic typography and graphic design found in and influenced by German-magazines like Jugend, Pan, and Simplicissimus. It is now applied to the broader manifestations of Art Nouveau visual arts in Germany, the Netherlands, the Baltic states, and Nordic countries.

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                Art Nouveau other names
                Other local names were associated with the characteristics of its forms, its practitioners and their works, and schools of thought or study where it was popular. Many of these terms refer to the idea of "newness". Before the term "Art Nouveau" became de rigueur in France, le style moderne ("the modern style") was the more frequent designation. Arte joven ("young art) in Spain, Arte nuova ("new art") in Italy, and Nieuwe kunst ("new art") in the Netherlands. In similar manner, its modern characteristics gave way to the label of Catalan Modernisme in Barcelona. Many names refer specifically to the organic forms that were popular with the Art Nouveau artists: Stile Floreal ("floral style"), Lilienstil ("lily style"), Style Nouille ("noodle style"), Stile Vermicelli ("vermicelli", or "little worm noodle" style), Bandwurmstil ("tapeworm style"), Paling Stijl ("eel style"), and Wellenstil ("wave style"). In other cases, important examples, well-known artists, and associated locations influenced the names. Hector Guimard's Paris Métro entrances, for example, provided the term Style Métro, the popularity in Italy of Art Nouveau designs from London's Liberty & Co department store resulted in its being known as the Stile Liberty ("Liberty style"), and, in the United States, it became known as the "Tiffany style" due to its connection to Louis Comfort Tiffany. In Austria, a localized form of Art Nouveau was practised by artists of the Vienna Secession, and it is, therefore, known as the Sezessionstil ("Secession style"). As a stand-alone term, however, "Secession" (German: Sezession, Hungarian: szecesszió) is frequently used to describe the general characteristics of Art Nouveau style beyond Vienna, but mostly in areas within the cultural reach of Austria-Hungary at the turn of the 20th century. In the United Kingdom, it is associated with the activities of Charles Rennie Mackintosh in Glasgow, and is often known as the "Glasgow" style. Art Nouveau tendencies were also absorbed into larger local movements. In Denmark, for example, it was one aspect of Skønvirke ("aesthetic activity"), which itself more closely relates to the Arts and Crafts Movement. Likewise, artists adopted many of the floral and organic motifs of Art Nouveau into the Mloda Polska ("Young Poland") movement in Poland. Mloda Polska, however, was also inclusive of other artistic styles and encompassed a broader approach to art, literature and lifestyle.

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                Art Nouveau Origins
                The Arts and Crafts Movement was the parent of Art Nouveau, but it persisted into the new period and after 1900 merged into the mainstream of the newer style. This was also true of symbolism, a Continental movement in poetry and painting that appeared in the 1870s. Most art historians agree that its roots lay in William Morris' Arts and Crafts movement, as well as the flat-perspective and strong colours of Japanese woodcuts - the latter reinforced by the wave of Japonisme that swept through Europe in the 1880s and 1890s. Connections were also forged between practitioners of Jugendstil and Celtic-style artists, notably in the area of abstract patternwork.  However, Arthur Mackmurdo's book-cover for Wren's City Churches (1883), with its rhythmic floral patterns, is often considered the first realisation of Art Nouveau. Around the same time, the flat perspective and strong colors of Japanese woodcuts, especially those of Katsushika Hokusai, had a strong effect on the formulation of Art Nouveau's formal language. The wave of Japonisme that swept through Europe in the 1880s and 1890s was particularly influential on many artists with its organic forms, references to the natural world, and clear designs that contrasted strongly with the reigning taste. Besides being adopted by artists like Emile Gallé and James Abbott McNeill Whistler, Japanese-inspired art and design was championed by the businessmen Siegfried Bing and Arthur Lasenby Liberty at their stores in Paris and London.

                Character of Art Nouveau
                One of the most important characteristics of the style is a dynamic, undulating and flowing, curved 'whiplash' line of syncopated rhythm. Hyperbolas and parabolas were used in art. Conventional moldings seem to spring to life and 'grow' into plant-derived forms. In line with with the Art Nouveau philosophy that art should become part of everyday life, it employed flat, decorative patterns that could be used in all art forms. Typical decorative elements include leaf and tendril motifs, intertwined organic forms, mostly curvaceous in shape, although right-angled designs were also prevalent in Scotland and in Austria. Art made in this style typically depicted lavish birds, flowers, insects and other zoomorphs, as well as the hair and curvaceous bodies of beautiful women. A description published in Pan magazine of Hermann Obrist's wall-hanging Cyclamen (1894) described it as "sudden violent curves generated by the crack of a whip", which became well known during the early spread of Art Nouveau. Subsequently, not only did the work itself become better known as The Whiplash, but the term "whiplash" is frequently applied to the characteristic curves employed by Art Nouveau artists. Such decorative "whiplash" motifs, formed by dynamic, undulating, and flowing lines in a syncopated rhythm, are found throughout the architecture, painting, sculpture, and other forms of Art Nouveau design.

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                Geography of Art Nouveau
                Art Nouveau is now considered a 'total' style, meaning that it encompasses a hierarchy of scales in design - architecture; interior design; decorative arts including jewellery, furniture, textiles, household silver and other utensils and lighting; and the range of visual arts. In the philosophy of the movement, art should be a way of life. For many Europeans, it was possible to live in an art nouveau-inspired house with art nouveau furniture, silverware, crockery, jewellery, cigarette cases, etc. Artists desired to break all connections to classical times and bring down the barriers between the fine arts and applied arts. Art Nouveau was underlined by a particular way of thinking about modern society and new production methods, attempting to redefine the meaning and nature of the work of art so that art would not overlook any everyday object, no matter how utilitarian.

                Art Nouveau in Belgium, Switzerland and France
                In France, the painting revolution preceded the Art Nouveau. The "impressionists" and the "independent club" clashed with academic and historical art down from the mid seventies (1875-90). In Paris, the Maison de l'Art Nouveau, at the time run by Siegfried Bing, showcased objects that followed this approach to design. Artists such as Émile Gallé, Louis Majorelle and Victor Prouvé in Nancy, France, founded the École de Nancy, giving Art Nouveau a new influence. In Brussels, Belgium the style was actively developed with the help of the architects Victor Horta and Henry Van de Velde. Other Art Nouveau designers in Belgium, Switzerland and France include Theophile Alexandre Steinlen, Alphonse Mucha and Hector Guimard.

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                Art Nouveau in Germany and Austria
                In Austria and Germany the new art movement had a hard stand against a conservative society. Towards the end of the nineteenth century several groups of avant-garde artists formed Jugendstil associations in Munich, Vienna and Berlin. Especially in the Austrian empire, the Sezession movement was started as an obvious rebellion against the rigid art world. German Art Nouveau is commonly known by its German name, Jugendstil. Drawing from traditional German printmaking, the style uses precise and hard edges, an element that was rather different from the naturalistic style of the time. The movement was centred in Munich and Darmstadt and was an essential element of the German movement. Within the field of Jugendstil art, there is a variety of different methods, applied by the various individual artists. Methods range from classic to romantic. The combination was used for covers of novels, advertisements, and exhibition posters. Designers often used unique display typefaces that worked harmoniously with the image. Henry Van de Velde, who worked most of his career in Germany, was a Belgian theorist who influenced many others to continue in this style of graphic art including Peter Behrens, Hermann Obrist, Richard Riemerschmid and  August Endell. Magazines were important in spreading the visual idiom of Jugendstil, especially the graphical qualities. Besides Jugend, other important ones were the satirical Simplicissimus and Pan. A localized approach to Art Nouveau is represented by the artists of the Vienna Secession, a secession that was initiated on 3 April 1897 by Gustav Klimt, Koloman Moser, Josef Hoffmann, Joseph Maria Olbrich, Max Kurzweil, Otto Wagner and others. They objected to the conservative orientation toward historicism expressed by the Vienna Künstlerhaus.

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                Art Nouveau in Britain
                In the Britain, Art Nouveau developed out of the Arts and Crafts Movement. The first stirrings of an Art Nouveau "movement" can be recognized in the 1880s, in a handful of progressive designs such as the architect-designer Arthur Mackmurdo's book cover design for his essay on the city churches of Sir Christopher Wren, published in 1883. Some free-flowing wrought iron from the 1880s could also be adduced, or some flat floral textile designs, most of which owed some impetus to patterns of High Victorian design. The most important centre in Britain eventually became Glasgow, with the creations of Charles Rennie Mackintosh and his circle. Other notable British Art Nouveau designers include Walter Crane, Arthur Lasenby Liberty, Charles Ashbee and Aubrey Beardsley The Edward Everard building in Bristol, built in 1900-01 to house the printing works of Edward Everard, features an Art Nouveau facade. The figures depicted are of Johannes Gutenberg and William Morris, both eminent in the field of printing. A winged figure symbolises the Spirit of Light, while a figure holding a lamp and mirror symbolises light and truth.

                Art Nouveau in Hungary
                In contrast to Historicism, Hungarian Art Nouveau is based on supposed national architectural characteristics. Ödön Lechner, the most important figure in Hungarian Art Nouveau, was initially inspired by Indian and Syrian architecture, and later by traditional Hungarian decorative designs. In this way, he created an original synthesis of architectural styles. Turning away from the style of Lechner, yet taking inspiration from his approach, the group of 'Young People' (Fiatalok), which included Károly Kós and Dezso Zrumeczky. Hungarian archiecture also displays local versions of trends originating from other European countries. The Sezession from Vienna, the German Jugendstil, Art Nouveau from Belgium and France, and the influence of English and Finnish architecture are all reflected in the buildings constructed at the turn of the century. Béla Lajta initially adopted Lechner's style, subsequently drawing his inspiration from English and Finnish trends; after developing an interest in the Egyptian style, he finally arrived at modern architecture. Aladár Árkay took almost the same route. István Medgyaszay developed his own style, which differed from Lechner's, using stylised traditional motifs to create decorative designs in concrete. In the sphere of applied arts, those chiefly responsible for promoting the spread of Art Nouveau were the School and Museum of Decorative Arts, which opened in 1896.

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                Art Nouveau in Spain
                In Spain, the movement was centred in Barcelona and was an essential element of the Catalan movement Modernisme. Architect Antoni Gaudí, whose decorative architectural style is so highly personal that he is sometimes seen as practising an artistic language separate from Art Nouveau, is nonetheless united with the movement by his use of floral and organic forms. His designs from around 1903 are most closely related to the stylistic elements of Art Nouveau. Gaudí, Lluís Domènech i Montaner also explored the Art Nouveau language in Barcelona in buildings such as the Casa Lleó Morera (1905). Another key figure is Josep Maria Jujol.

                Art Nouveau in Czech and Bohemia
                The influence of Alphonse Mucha was felt in Prague and Moravia and the style of Art Nouveau became associated with the Czech National Revival. Fin de siècle sections of Prague reveal modest buildings encrusted with leaves and ladies that curve and swirl across the facades. Examples of Art Nouveau in the city, along with the exteriors of any number of private apartment and commercial buildings, are the Hotel Pariz, Smíchov Market Hall, Hotel Central, the windows in the St. Wenceslas Chapel at St. Vitus Cathedral, the main railway station, the Grand Hotel and the Jubilee Synagogue. The Olsany Cemetery and the New Jewish Cemetery are also important examples of Art Nouveau.

                Art Nouveau in Eastern Europe
                Under Latvian Romanticism, Riga, the capital of Latvia, became home to over 800 Art Nouveau buildings, many of which were designed and built by the prominent Latvian-Russian Art Nouveau architect Mikhail Eisenstein. In Russia, the movement revolved around the art magazine Mir iskusstva ('World of Art'), which spawned the revolutionary Ballets Russes. The Polish movement was centred in Krakow and was part of the Mloda Polska movement. Stanislaw Wyspianski was the leading Art Nouveau artist in Poland; his paintings, theatrical designs, stained glass, and building interiors are widely admired and celebrated in the National Museum in Kraków. Art Nouveau buildings survive in most Polish cities (Lódz, Kraków), with the exception of Warsaw, where Communist authorities destroyed the few examples that survived the Nazi razing of the city on the grounds that the buildings were decadent. The Slovene Lands were another area influenced by Art Nouveau. At its beginning, Slovenian Art Nouveau was strongly influenced by the Viennese Secession, but it later developed an individual style. Important architects in this style include Max Fabiani, Ciril Metod Koch, Jože Plecnik, Ivan Vurnik and a Croatian Josip Vancaš, with the vast majority of the architecture to be found in Ljubljana. Croatia was an area of secessionist architecture as well. Architects like Vjekoslav Bastl and Baranyai developed a mixture between modernism and classical Art Nouveau.

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                Art Nouveau and decorative arts
                Two-dimensional Art Nouveau pieces were painted, drawn, and printed in popular forms such as advertisements, posters, labels, magazines and the like. Japanese wood-block prints, with their curved lines, patterned surfaces, contrasting voids, and flatness of visual plane, also inspired Art Nouveau. Some line and curve patterns became graphic cliche that were later found in works of artists from all parts of the world
                Glass art was an area in which the style found tremendous expression - for example, the works of Louis Comfort Tiffany in New York, Charles Rennie Mackintosh in Glasgow, and Émile Gallé and the Daum brothers in Nancy, France.  Lalique was recognized as one of France's foremost Art Nouveau  designers; creating innovative pieces for Samuel Bing's new Paris shop, La Maison de l'Art Nouveau. He went on to be one of the most famous in his field, his name synonymous with creativity and quality. Art nouveau Ceramics were influenced by the work of Japan. The development of high temperature (grand feu) porcelain with crystalized and matte glazes, with or without other decoration, is typical of these works. It was a period where lost techniques were rediscovered, such as the oxblood glaze, and entirely new methods were developed. Leading French potters include: Ernest Chaplet, Taxile Doat, Adrien-Pierre Dalpayrat, Edmond Lachenal and Albert Dammouse.
                Jewellery of the Art Nouveau period revitalised the jeweller's art, with nature as the principal source of inspiration, complemented by new levels of virtuosity in enamelling and the introduction of new materials, such as opals and semi-precious stones. The widespread interest in Japanese art and the more specialised enthusiasm for Japanese metalworking skills fostered new themes and approaches to ornament. In jewellery Art Nouveau revitalised the jeweller's art, with nature as the principal source of inspiration, complemented by new levels of virtuosity in enamelling and the introduction of new materials, such as opals and semi-precious stones. The widespread interest in Japanese art and the more specialised enthusiasm for Japanese metalworking skills, fostered new themes and approaches to ornament. For the previous two centuries the emphasis in fine jewellery had been on gemstones, particularly on the diamond, and the jeweller or goldsmith had been principally concerned with providing settings for their advantage. Now a completely different type of jewellery was emerging, motivated by the artist-designer rather than the jeweller as setter of precious stones. With Art Nouveau, a different type of jewellery emerged, motivated by the artist-designer rather than the jeweller as setter of precious stones. The jewellers of Paris and Brussels defined Art Nouveau in jewellery, and in these cities it achieved the most renown. Contemporary French critics were united in acknowledging that jewellery was undergoing a radical transformation, and that the French designer-jeweller-glassmaker René Lalique was at its heart. Lalique glorified nature in jewellery, extending the repertoire to include new aspects of nature - such as dragonflies or grasses - inspired by his encounter with Japanese art. The jewellers were keen to establish the new style in a noble tradition, and for this they looked back to the Renaissance, with its works of sculpted and enamelled gold, and its acceptance of jewellers as artists rather than craftsmen. In most of the enamelled work of the period, precious stones receded. Diamonds were usually given subsidiary roles, used alongside less familiar materials such as moulded glass, horn and ivory.

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                Art Nouveau and other contemporary styles and movements
                As an art movement, Art Nouveau has affinities with the Pre-Raphaelites and the Symbolist movement, and artists like Aubrey Beardsley, Alphonse Mucha, Edward Burne-Jones, Gustav Klimt and Jan Toorop could be classed in more than one of these styles. Unlike Symbolist painting, however, Art Nouveau has a distinctive visual look; and unlike the artisan-oriented Arts and Crafts Movement, Art Nouveau artists readily used new materials, machined surfaces and abstraction in the service of pure design.
                Art Nouveau did not negate the machine as the Arts and Crafts Movement did, but used it to its advantage. For sculpture, the principal materials employed were glass and wrought iron, leading to sculptural qualities even in architecture. Ceramics were also employed in creating editions of sculptures by artists such as Auguste Rodin.
                Art Nouveau architecture made use of many technological innovations of the late 19th century, especially the broad use of exposed iron and large, irregularly shaped pieces of glass in architecture. By the start of the First World War, however, the highly stylised nature of Art Nouveau design was expensive to produce and began to be dropped in favour of more streamlined, rectilinear modernism, which was cheaper and thought to be more faithful to the rough, plain, industrial aesthetic that became Art Deco.

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