Art Nouveau – Tiffany – Alphonse Mucha
Art Nouveau an international art movement and style of decoration and architecture of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, characterized particularly by the curvilinear depiction of leaves and flowers, often in the form of vines. These might also be describe as foliate forms, with sinuous lines and “whiplash” curves. Gustav Klimt, Alphonse Mucha, Toulouse-Lautrec, Aubrey Beardsley, Antoni Gaudí and Hector Guimard were among the most prominent artists associated with this style. In America, it inspired, among others, Louis Comfort Tiffany.
Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848-1933)
Tiffany was an interior designer, and in 1878 his interest turned towards the creation of stained glass, when he opened his own studio and glass foundry because he was unable to find the types of glass that he desired in interior decoration. His inventiveness both as a designer of windows and as a producer of the material with which to create them was to become renowned. Tiffany wanted the glass itself to transmit texture and rich colors and he developed a type of glass he called Favrile.
Alphonse Mucha (1860-1939)
Mucha moved to Paris in 1887. In addition to his studies, he worked at producing magazine and advertising illustrations. About Christmas 1894, Mucha happened to go into a print shop where there was a sudden and unexpected need for a new advertising poster for a play featuring Sarah Bernhardt, the most famous actress in Paris, at the Théâtre de la Renaissance. Mucha volunteered to produce a lithographed poster within two weeks.
Gismonda, the poster which Mucha created, was to revolutionise poster design. The long narrow shape, the subtle pastel colours and the “halo” effect around the subject´s head were to remain features of Mucha´s posters throughout his life.