Art Deco and Art Nouveau

Art Nouveau was an art movement that occurred between 1890 and 1910 throughout Europe. Whilst only lasting a short time it was a very influential movement and informed a lot of the times design. Paintings, architecture, interior design and posters were some of the things created in the Art Nouveau style. The movement is characterised by its use of organic imagery taking inspiration directly from the natural world and featured flowing fluid lines. The movement was like many others opposed to the conventions of fine art of the time and the traditions of how art was viewed and studied. The style fell out of fashion but was revitalised in the 1960s when exhibitions and styles like the ‘psychedelic’ aesthetic brought it back into the minds of artist.

Alphonsa Mucha, Four Seasons, 1896

Art Deco was an art movement that occurred in the 1920s and 30s in Europe and the US. It is said to have originated from the ‘Exposition Internationale des Arts Decoratifs et Industriels Mordernes’ event that was held in 1925 in Paris. The movement is seen as a successor to the Art Nouveau movement but varies in that it featured more geometric symmetrical forms in its designs. After WW1 Europe and the US underwent rapid technological advancement that resulted in industrial booms, the Art Deco style was seen as a luxurious style that conveyed wealth and class and became popular amongst the wealthy of Europe and the US. Though the style is synonymous with the 1920s Art Deco has also lived on finding popularity again in the 60s and continuing to inform design and in particular architecture and interior design to this day.

Empire State Building, Designed by Shreve, Lamb & Harmon, Built 1930-1931