Art Nouveau is a style of art and architecture that was popular in the late 1890s through 1910. It is characterized by organic forms, floral patterns, and an abundance of curving lines. And the Art Nouveau movement can still be seen today in architecture and design. As well as a quick visit to the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.
Art Nouveau emergence
The movement originated in France and Belgium and spread to England, Germany, Austria-Hungary, the Netherlands, Russia, Sweden, Denmark, Italy, Spain, and the United States. Art Nouveau is usually associated with organic forms and plant motifs. The style often incorporates the use of natural forms and natural materials.
Stained glass artistry
One of the most recognizable design examples is the stained glass windows by Louis Comfort Tiffany. Designers in the time period applied floral and plant forms in asymmetrical patterns. It was also common to see curved lines in designs.
Artistry from nature
The movement’s emphasis on animal and plant forms led to the wide use of jewelry and furniture made of natural materials. Companies like Tiffany Studios are responsible for many of the designs that are still popular today.
Louis Majorelle started a furniture company called “Maison Majorelle,” which was a very successful company in Morocco and influenced the Moroccan colonial style. He is also the designer of the famous Villa Majorelle in Morocco.
An early influence on graphic design and illustration
Eugène Grasset, a graphic artist, is considered one of the most important French illustrators. His work is characterized by curving lines and many flowers. Other famous French artists in the movement are Alphonse Mucha, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, and René Mackintosh. In the late 19th century, Vienna Secession and Glasgow Style were also influenced by Art Nouveau. In Vienna, artists like Koloman Moser and Josef Hoffmann were involved in the movement. In Glasgow, Charles Rennie Mackintosh was a well-known designer.
The movement is also known for its illustration work. Artists such as Aubrey Beardsley, Alphonse Mucha, and Gustav Klimt were involved in the movement.
And even in architecture
There are many different examples of Art Nouveau architecture. One example is the Musee d’Orsay in Paris, designed by Victor Laloux and erected between 1898 and 1900. Still another variation, designed by Hector Guimard, is the Gare de Lyon.
Gustave Eiffel’s famous tower, the Eiffel Tower, is a towering example of the influence. The work of Viollet-le-Duc inspired it.
Hector Guimard is another renowned architect who designed many of Paris’ metro stations with a oft-described style as “Art Nouveau.” Antoni Gaudí designed beautiful buildings in Barcelona, Spain, often described as an example of “Gothic Art Nouveau” because they combine Gothic Revival and Art Nouveau styles.
The style is all around us
You can find the movement in a lot of different places and things in the world today.
One example is the Liberty store in London, created in the early 20th century by Louis Majorelle. This store was designed to be an “Art Nouveau showroom” because it showcased everything that had to do with the movement. Today, the store is still popular and offers many products considered Art Nouveau or Art Deco design.
Other examples of design can be found in Barcelona, Spain, known for its Gaudí architecture.
If you are looking for a design style that incorporates natural forms and materials, then Art Nouveau is a great option.