During this week's history lecture, Tony moved on to Art Nouveau which I enjoyed as I'm finding it really interesting moving through the decades each week. I was intrigued to realise that the movement of Art Nouveau differed between different European countries as I thought it had particular characteristics through them all. The two different motives are nature and geometry for this movement and it differs between cities. Architect A H Mackmurdo, from the Arts and Crafts Movement was one of the biggest influences for this era due to his curved, linear, natural details, which carried through to Art Nouveau.
One of the main cities I'll start with is Glasgow. Charles Rennie Mackintosh is definitely a significant name when it comes to this movement due to his huge success. Despite nature being a big drive for this era, Mackintosh was mainly influenced by geometry. He cleverly used his Scottish heritage to produce Celtic inspired pieces, lacking curves and ornamentation. Known for his geometric furniture and his recognisable celtic rose motifs, his work has moved through the movements. Therefore, Mackintosh was the main inspiration for the Art Deco which follows this era.
The Viennese loved the work of Mackintosh. Art Nouveau in Vienna was mainly lead by Koloman Moser, Josef Hoffman, Joseph Maria Olbrich and Gustav Klimt. Mackintosh was the main inspiration for Josef Hoffman. Architecture was a strong element of the era and the Secession building (1897) was probably the biggest feature of this movement in Vienna, which was built by Joseph Maria Olbrich. The building also contains a mural by Gustav Klimt which is definitely of the Art Nouveau period. This is where Glasgow and Vienna differ as Vienna was heavily inspired by nature - featuring lots of linear, ornate decoration.
Spain also have their own take within this movement. Gaudi was one of the main artists through this era, with his extraordinary architecture. Heavily influenced by nature, Gaudi created Parc Guell (Barcelona) and La Sagrada Familia which have gothic, oriental details. Ceramics were also one of his loves, along with architecture, and iron sculpture often featured. It is clear how this differs from Glaswegian art due to the curved linear details, in comparison with the strong geometry from Mackintosh. The Casino de Madrid, a social club of the early 19th century also has details of Art Nouveau with its ornamentation and oriental exterior.
Nancy, a northeastern French region, is the last location I will cover. Known for its Art Nouveau character, Nancy contains many beautiful churches and palaces, along with wrought iron sculptures, filling the medieval areas. It is obvious that Nancy was inspired greatly by nature due to the lack of geometry, particular reference to leaves/greenery and animals, and a clear Japonism influence. The main artists include Louis Majorelle and Émile Gallé, and their work strongly differs from that of Mackintosh due to the curves. The glass work of Émile Gallé clearly highlights nature and the furniture of Mackintosh and Majorelle are complete opposites.