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Art Nouveau...A Passion Inherited

Posted by silverwithemotion on September 4th, 2018

Growing up on the road and at exhibitions, going from showroom to stand, country to country and seeing this vast amount of what we both called treasure, I guess you can become slightly desensitised to all the shine and bling and kind or take it for granted – my brother and I thought everyone had their own Aladdins Cave of treasure just like us! I can even remember now the bed time story of Alibaba and the 40 thieves and all their treasure that our dad used to tell us at night...

Since our father created this business and still very much is at the heart of things even today it was hard to find the same passion as he did – for him all the designs were like his creations and mini children but for us they were just pieces of silver for the most part. I do remember, however, the few occasions when I could say I fell in love with the collection myself too.... Again, it was probably mostly down to the passion with which my father talks about his inspirations that probably affected me but when he described the artist Mucha to me and showed me how some of his designs were inspired by Mucha and the Art Nouveau design period something clicked and I too began to fall in love with the romance of Art Nouveau. I remember my favourite pieces were these pewter statues of Art Nouveau style ladies – I just thought they looked cool!

So what is Art Nouveau I hear you ask?

The name Art Nouveau is French for new art and was derived from the Maison de l’ Art Nouveau which was the name of the gallery opened in Paris in 1895 by art dealer, Samuel Bing, which exclusively featured modern art. This style was known as Jugendstil which is the German for 'youth style' so named after the magazine Jugend which promoted the Art Nouveau look. Interestingly enough in Britain, Art Nouveau had a close kinship to what we called the Arts and Crafts movement, where artists such as Charles Rennie Mackintosh found fame. The Arts and Crafts Movement had begun some time before the Parisienne inspired Art Nouveau movement.

Art Nouveau was inspired by natural forms and structures, not only by flowers and plants but also by curved free flowing lines. Art Nouveau artistry and theory challenged the belief that art could only be a painting, drawing or sculpture and instead advocated that the design of everyday objects, from chairs to tea pots could also exude artistic appreciation.

Also See: Art Nouveau, Growing Up, Crafts Movement, Youth Style, Nouveau, Art, Us

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