Art Nouveau and Art Deco

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<ul><li><p>History of Architecture (AP313) | Term Paper | 2014 </p><p>Page 1 of 7 </p><p>Art Nouveau and Art Deco </p><p>Term Paper for History of Architecture (AP131) </p><p> Varsha Mallya </p><p> Roll Number: 29 </p><p>Sushant School of Art and Architecture </p><p>ABSTRACT </p><p>This paper discusses the decline of the arts and crafts movement and how the art </p><p>nouveau rose and developed as the artisan got tired of being a slave to foreign </p><p>fashion, taste, and art. (4) and desired to develop a new form of decorative art that </p><p>represents its independence, and also discusses how the art deco came about and </p><p>its influences. </p><p>PAPER </p><p>Arts and Crafts Movement (1850-1900) </p><p>Rise of the Arts and Crafts Movement </p><p>The Arts and Crafts Movement was a response to the industrial revolution. Thomas </p><p>James Cobden-Sanderson was the first person to coin the word arts and craft </p><p>movement. (2) According to him, this movement can be associated with the </p><p>movement of ideas which have characteristics of the past and be defined by art </p><p>where human activity of all kinds expresses itself at its highest and best.(2) </p><p>The main aim of the Arts and Crafts movement was to re-establish the harmony </p><p>between architect, designer and crafts man and bring hand craftsmanship to the </p></li><li><p>History of Architecture (AP313) | Term Paper | 2014 </p><p>Page 2 of 7 </p><p>production of well-designed everyday objects. Arts and Crafts Movement was </p><p>promoted simple items manufactured through good craft techniques. It was a </p><p>rebellion against the age of mass production. It is actually a return to traditional </p><p>craft methods and romantic forms of decoration. Ornamental objects, floral </p><p>fabrics, book making, weaving, jewellery, metalwork and ceramics, were all </p><p>influenced by the Art and Crafts movement. </p><p>Decline of the Arts and Crafts Movement </p><p>Despite its high ideals, the Arts and Crafts Movement was essentially flawed. </p><p>Though Morris wanted his products to be available to the ordinary people the </p><p>labour-intensive products could only be afforded by the privileged classes. </p><p>Art Nouveau </p><p>Rise of Art Nouveau (1890-1910) </p><p>The term Art Nouveau was coined from and art gallery in Paris, called Maison de </p><p>l'Art Nouveau (House of New Art) which was run by a French dealer Siegfried Bing. </p><p>(5) </p><p>It is believed that art nouveau also known as New Art sprang from a major </p><p>movement in decorative arts spread across Western Europe in the year 1892. But its </p><p>birth was not believed to be spontaneous. The interiors in the 19th century were a </p><p>complete mix of styles to characterize the homeownership in the Victorian age. The </p><p>machines were used to manufacture the period castoffs to meet the decorating </p><p>whims of the upper-class and the expanding bourgeoisie. What do we see on </p><p>every side? Wallpapers which wound the eye; against them , ornate furniture that </p><p>wounds the eye ; at intervals gaudily draped bay which wounds the eye ; and every </p><p>spare and nook and cranny is hung with plates of spinach with decorative borders </p><p>which wound the eye, let the eye come to terms with all this as best it can. (2) </p><p>People started to tire of the repetitive decorative clichs, the eternal imitation of </p><p>furniture from the reign of monarchs, or from the renaissance and the gothic </p><p>period.(4) Jean Lahor describes in his book, that people (outside of France) desired </p><p>for a change and they no longer wanted to be slave to foreign fashion, taste, and </p><p>art. After the end of the Ancien Regime, every country tried to represent its </p><p>independence through literature and art. (4) </p><p>There was an immediate need to revamp decorative style. Decorative art flourished </p><p>through ages; nearly everything had a decorative finish, everything from fabric to </p><p>walls to domestic items such as tea cups. At the end of the 19th century, people </p><p>started having complete indifference towards decorative elegance and beauty. (4) </p></li><li><p>History of Architecture (AP313) | Term Paper | 2014 </p><p>Page 3 of 7 </p><p>It was not until the 1889 universal Exposition, did the Art Nouveau movement gain </p><p>a pace. All the items displayed in this Exposition led to the formation of a </p><p>decorative revolution. The unfolding of Art Nouveau's flowing line may be </p><p>understood as a metaphor for the freedom and release sought by its practitioners </p><p>and admirers from the weight of artistic tradition and critical expectations. (5). </p><p>Trying to be free from the prejudice of high art. The Art nouveau could be </p><p>considered as a protest against the traditional decorative art by using straight and </p><p>simplistic lines or by using sinuous, curving lines, sometimes right-angled forms </p><p>were also used. (5) </p><p>Art Nouveau embraced all forms of art and design: architecture, furniture, </p><p>glassware, graphic design, jewelry, painting, pottery, metalwork, and textiles. This </p><p>was a sharp contrast to the traditional separation of art into the distinct categories </p><p>of fine art -painting and sculpture and applied arts- ceramics, furniture .(5) </p><p>Arthur Heygate Mackmurdo (1851-1942) was an English architect; craftsman was </p><p>one of the few people who initiated the Art Nouveau Movement. His designs had </p><p>linear simplicity and asymmetrical compositions which were rendered in contrasting </p><p>colours. (3) The Chair designed by him in the year 1882 could be considered one of </p><p>the earliest examples of Art Nouveau. (5) </p><p>When artists started to reject the limitations of the Arts and Crafts ideals, they </p><p>started to positively embrace the techniques of industrial manufacturing. It was </p><p>mainly due to William Morris and Ruskin that the Art Nouveau came into fashion in </p><p>England. William Morris was the one, who challenged the mid Victorian aesthetic </p><p>values and how it affects the society as a whole. (2). The British Art Nouveau artists </p><p>and designers shared the same dedication and principals as William Morris. To </p><p>these principles they experimented with new forms and materials. (5) </p><p>In Maison de l'Art Nouveau, Bing displayed not only paintings and sculpture but also </p><p>ceramics, furniture, metalwork, and Japanese art. Sections of the gallery were </p><p>devoted to model rooms that artists and architects designed in the art nouveau </p><p>style. (5) </p><p>Art Deco </p><p>Rise of Art Deco (1925-1940) </p><p>The Art Nouveau movement was at its peak in the beginning of the 20th century. </p><p>An exhibition called the Exposition Internationale des Arts Dcoratifs et </p></li><li><p>History of Architecture (AP313) | Term Paper | 2014 </p><p>Page 4 of 7 </p><p>Industriels Modernes was planned and supposed to be held in the years between </p><p>1912-1915. But, due to the World War I that raged throughout the world from </p><p>1914 to 1918, this exhibition was postponed by nearly 10 years (7). </p><p>In the year 1925, an exposition called the -Exposition Internationale des Arts </p><p>Dcoratifs et Industriels Moderneswas held at Le Musee des Arts Decoratifs in </p><p>Paris. The purpose of this exposition was to display the modern industrial </p><p>decorative arts at an international platform which were produced by artists from </p><p>different countries. The displayed works were both individual crafted luxury </p><p>items and mass produced wares. (6) </p><p>The name Art Deco was derived from: Exposition Internationale des Arts </p><p>Dcoratifs et Industriels Modernes. (6) The exhibition that was held was not </p><p>universal as it did not affect all human activities. You can say every country tried </p><p>to depict its nationalism through its products. The exhibitions displayed works of </p><p>21 nations, (7) the United States did not participate as the U.S. Secretary of </p><p>Commerce - Herbert Hoover discouraged participation , instead he sent team of </p><p>experts learn and adapt the designs displayed the exhibition to the American </p><p>architectural expression. (8) </p><p>In the beginning of the 20th century, there were many discoveries as well as new </p><p>inventions made. In the year 1923, Howard Carter and his associates discovered </p><p>King Tutankhamens tomb. In the era where people believed and relied on </p><p>scientific facts and being rational, they were unable to explain the demise of </p><p>Howard Carter and his associates and the curse associated with the tomb. These </p><p>controversies lead people to have a sudden interest in Egyptian motifs such as </p><p>hieroglyphics, pyramidal shape, scarabs etc. All of which we can see in many </p><p>products such as jackets, fabrics, also as relief work on building that were made </p><p>during this period. </p><p> Fig 1: Hand-beaded lurex jacket with Egyptian motifs, Paris, France, 1922-25. Source: http://www.vam.ac.uk/__data/assets/image/0011/184268/2006al1492_deco_egyptian_sequin_jacket.jpg </p></li><li><p>History of Architecture (AP313) | Term Paper | 2014 </p><p>Page 5 of 7 </p><p>Bevis Hillier states that- Art Decos ultimate aim was to end the age old conflict </p><p>between art and industry, the old snobbish distinction between artist and artisan, </p><p>partly by making artists adept at crafts, but still more by adapting design to the </p><p>requirement of mass production. </p><p>The sinuous, curving lines that were used during the Art nouveau are no longer </p><p>seen. The buildings that were made during that Art Deco were very geometric </p><p>and angular, having a streamlined finish decorated with motifs ranging from </p><p>hieroglyphics, scarabs, cartouches to cars or machinery that depicted the </p><p>machine age. </p><p>Fig 2: Empress Theatre (Montreal) decorated with hieroglyphics </p><p>and cartouches. </p><p>Source: http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2693/4114200712_9268d4bda0.jpg </p><p>One example of an art deco building is the Coca-Cola Building built in the year </p><p>1939 by architect Robert V. Derrah. The building with a streamline appearance </p><p>resembles a ship with portholes, catwalk and a bridge from five existing industrial </p><p>buildings in 1939. (9) </p><p>Fig 3: Coca-Cola Building </p><p>Source:http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/1/12/Coca-Cola_Building_Los_Angeles.jpg/250px-Coca-</p><p>cola_Building_Los_Angeles.jpg </p><p>The Chrysler Building built by William Van Alen in the year 1930 in New York, one of </p><p>many examples of Art Deco buildings. It was one of the first buildings composed of </p><p>stainless steel over a large exposed surface. (8) The architect, drawing inspiration </p></li><li><p>History of Architecture (AP313) | Term Paper | 2014 </p><p>Page 6 of 7 </p><p>from the machine age used eagle hood ornaments, hubcaps and abstract images of </p><p>cars as ornamental details on the Chrysler Building. </p><p>Fig 4: The spire is modelled on a radiator grille. </p><p>Source: http://www.aviewoncities.com/img/nyc/kveus2133p.jpg </p><p>Fig 4: Gargoyle sculpture made out of metal. </p><p>Source: http://www.aviewoncities.com/img/nyc/kveus2230p.jpg </p><p>This Movement, Art Deco that followed At Nouveau would eventually come together </p><p>and lead to the advent of modernism and the foundation of the Bauhaus School of </p><p>Art and Design built by Walter Gropius. Walter Gropius wanted to alter art, crafts </p><p>and architecture to meet the needs of an industrial society where arts and craft </p><p>mold and unify with technology. </p></li><li><p>History of Architecture (AP313) | Term Paper | 2014 </p><p>Page 7 of 7 </p><p>Bibliography </p><p>1. Cumming, Elizabeth and Kaplan, Wendy. The Arts and Crafts Movement. London : </p><p>Thames and Hudson, 1991. ISBN 0-500-20248-6. </p><p>2. Thomas James Cobden-Sanderson. The Arts and Crafts Movement. </p><p>3. Duncan, Alastair. Art Nouveau. London : Thames and Hudson, 1999. ISBN 0-500-</p><p>20273-7. </p><p>4. Lahor, Jean. Art Nouveau </p><p>5. http://www.mr-oscar-wilde.de/lifetime/art_nouveau.htm [Online] </p><p>6. http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/36505/Art-Deco [Online] </p><p>7. http://lartnouveau.com/art_deco/expo_art_deco_1925.htm [Online] </p><p> 8.http://architecture.about.com/od/periodsstyles/ig/Historic-Styles/Art-Deco-</p><p>.htm [Online] </p><p>9. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coca-Cola_Building_%28Los_Angeles%29 </p></li></ul>

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