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Article

Italian, 20th century, male.

Born 1900, in Marciana Marina (Livorno); died 1971, in Milan.

Painter, ceramicist, illustrator, scenographer, writer. Stage costumes.

Futurism.

Giovanni Acquaviva studied philosophy and law at the University of Pisa, while devoting himself to illustration at the same time. He founded the Futurist group ...

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Alan Crawford

(b Isleworth, Middx, May 17, 1863; d Godden Green, Kent, May 23, 1942).

English designer, writer, architect and social reformer . He was educated at King’s College, Cambridge. As a young man he was deeply influenced by the teachings of John Ruskin and William Morris, and particularly by their vision of creative workmanship in the Middle Ages; such a vision made work in modern times seem like mechanical drudgery. Ashbee played many parts and might be thought a dilettante; but his purpose was always to give a practical expression to what he had learnt from Ruskin and Morris. An intense and rather isolated figure, he found security in a life dedicated to making the world a better place.

In 1888, while he was training to be an architect in the office of G. F. Bodley and Thomas Garner (1839–1906), Ashbee set up the Guild and School of Handicraft in the East End of London. The School lasted only until 1895, but the Guild, a craft workshop that combined the ideals of the Arts and Crafts Movement with a romantic, apolitical socialism, was to be the focus of Ashbee’s work for the next 20 years. There were five guildsmen at first, making furniture and base metalwork. In ...

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Article

Dennis Raverty

(b Charlotte, NC, Sept 2, 1911 or 1912; d New York City, Mar 12, 1988).

African American painter, collagist, and author. Bearden is best known for his collages, which often addressed urban themes (e.g. The Dove). He was a founding member of Spiral, a group of African American artists who started meeting at his downtown New York studio in 1963. He also published essays and cartoons, designed book jackets, magazine and album covers, and is widely regarded as the first African American artist to successfully enter the mainstream of the contemporary art world. The posthumously published book he co-authored with Harry Henderson, A History of African-American Artists: From 1792 to the Present (1993), in a very short time became an almost canonical text in the field.

Bearden’s family moved permanently to Harlem, a predominately black neighborhood of New York City, in 1920. His mother, Bessye Bearden, was the New York correspondent for the Chicago Defender, an African American newspaper, and through her Bearden was introduced to many of the artists, writers, and intellectuals associated with the ...

Article

French, 20th century, male.

Born 1902; died 1992.

Draughtsman, watercolourist, photographer, ethnologist. Costume studies.

Jean Besancenot is known for his classic work on the costumes of Morocco based on his research gathered between 1934 and 1939 and first published in 1942. The original edition includes around 60 costumes and headdresses in colour plates, executed by Besancenot himself. Earlier he had completed a study on some regional costumes of Europe. He is probably the same artist as Jean Besancenot-Girard....

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Marcel Smets

[Karel] (François Gommaire)

(b Brussels, Oct 13, 1837; d Uccle, July 13, 1914).

Belgian urban planner and writer. The son of a jeweller, he spent a somewhat isolated youth: poor health enhanced a shyness, which set him apart from other children. Although he completed secondary schooling, in terms of his vocation he was largely self-taught. After nearly two years of artistic training in Paris and Italy, he gave up plans to follow in his father’s trade, choosing instead to take up the cause of educational reform. With some of his liberal friends he founded in 1864 the Ligue de l’Enseignement, a pressure group with close ties to Masonic circles. He particularly devoted himself to drawing primary instruction away from ecclesiastical influence and to setting up a new teaching method based on comprehension and experience rather than on learning by rote. In 1875 he became the first director of a successful model school created according to these new didactical objectives.

All the while Buls was deeply concerned with the development of the decorative arts. Disappointment with the appeal of the artistic production of his time made him turn to history for roots and principles that might provide a more invigorating approach. Influenced by the mid-19th-century German art historians, Karl Schnaase and Wilhelm Lübke, and by the aesthetic theories of Gottfried Semper, he soon adopted their rationalist thesis whereby each of the decorative arts was to be determined by its use, the properties of its materials and the method of construction. Philosophical considerations by Kant and Schopenhauer convinced him that eternal ideas were the foundation of aesthetical contemplation, ideas that Buls related to the inherent nature and tradition of the population and the place from which the artistic expression emanated. He thus arrived at the concept of a national art that he was to defend for the rest of his life....

Article

Claire Brisby

Italian family of jewellers, collectors and writers. The firm founded in Rome by (1) Fortunato Pio Castellani shortly after 1820 and expanded by his sons (2) Alessandro Castellani and (3) Augusto Castellani was foremost in reviving period style in jewellery design. Their reputation was established in Rome by the mid-19th century, and they were renowned as antiquarians as much as jewellers and were consulted by museums in London, Paris and Vienna. After 1860 the Castellani opened shops in Paris and Naples; from 1862 until 1884 they exhibited regularly at international exhibitions, including the International Exhibition of 1862 in London, and their work remained virtually unaffected by subsequent stylistic developments. Designs were closely inspired by, and in some cases reproduced, antique and medieval pieces, often from their own considerable study collection. They were widely imitated throughout England, France, Italy and the USA. Their jewellery is notable for its use of gold; the family perfected processes for simulating the techniques of filigree and granulation used in antique jewellery. A variety of chainwork and hinged pieces with repoussé decoration are characteristic of the firm. Among their most popular designs were pieces ornamented with fine glass mosaic inspired by Byzantine jewellery (e.g. bracelet with white and gold mosaic, ...

Article

Philip Ward-Jackson

(b Paris, March 6, 1829; d Paris, Nov 12, 1896).

French sculptor and writer. Born in humble circumstances, he was apprenticed to a jeweller at the age of 11. He subsequently trained with the painter Abel de Pujol (1785–1861) but seems to have taught himself the techniques of sculpture, and at the 1848 Salon he exhibited a plaster sketch of Khair-ed-Din, called Barbarossa (untraced). In 1851, on the advice of his patron, the Comte de Nieuwekerke, he became François Rude’s last pupil. In 1853 he exhibited a plaster group of Queen Hortense and her Son Louis Napoleon (untraced; ex-Bagnères-de-Bigorre, Mus. A.), which brought him a commission from Louis Napoleon, by then Napoleon III, for a marble of the same group (Compiègne, Château); this was exhibited in 1855 at the Exposition Universelle, Paris. During the remaining years of the Second Empire, Chatrousse executed a number of sculptures to decorate public buildings in Paris, such as the Louvre, the Tuileries, the Hôtel de Ville and numerous churches. He exhibited works with religious and historical subjects: some of these, such as ...

Article

French, 20th century, male.

Born 1898, in St-Nazaire; died 1964, in Étables-sur-Mer.

Painter, engraver (wood), illustrator, ethnologist. Genre scenes, local scenes, seascapes. Designs for jewellery, furniture.

Ar Seiz Breur.

René Yves Creston trained at the École des Beaux-Arts in Nantes in 1919, then at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris in ...

Article

German, 20th century, male.

Born 12 April 1871, in Berlin; died 15 April 1925, in Breslau (now Wroclaw, Poland).

Draughtsman, architect, decorative artist, designer, illustrator, author. Furniture, jewellery, lamps, art objects.

Jugendstil.

Deutscher Werkbund.

In Munich, August Endell studied philosophy, art history, aesthetics and psychology, notably a course run by Theodor Lipp on the psychological effect of the perception of lines and forms. There, in ...

Article

Greek, 20th century, male.

Born 1910, in Athens; died 1985.

Painter, illustrator, decorative designer, poet. Mythological subjects, genre scenes, urban landscapes. Stage sets, stage costumes, icons.

Nico Engonopoulos spent his childhood in Istanbul, then known as Constantinople. After an aimless stay in Paris, he studied at the school of fine art in Athens ...

Article

Robert J. Belton

(b Jassy [now Iaşi], Romania, Aug 29, 1933).

Canadian sculptor, film maker, costume designer, playwright and poet of Romanian birth. His formal art training began in 1945 but in 1950 he emigrated to Israel. From 1953 he studied at the Institute of Painting and Sculpture in Tel Aviv. Etrog’s first one-man exhibition took place in 1958 and consisted of Painted Constructions, wood and canvas objects blurring the distinctions between painting and low relief (see Heinrich). In these works he tried to embody uncertainties that stemmed from his experience of Nazi aggression as a boy. The results were loosely expressionistic versions of geometric abstraction, derived in part from the work of Paul Klee.

Assisted by the painter Marcel Janco, Etrog went on a scholarship to New York, where he was inspired by Oceanic and African artefacts he saw in the collections there. This led to a preoccupation with organic abstractions, flowing totemic forms, and metaphors of growth and movement, seen in ...

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Andreas Kreul

(b Berlin, June 5, 1867; d Amsterdam, Oct 11, 1958).

German art historian and museum director. The son of the court jeweller in Berlin, he studied in Munich, Florence and Leipzig, where he wrote a dissertation on Albrecht Altdorfer. After practical training in Berlin and his first, brief activity at the Wallraf-Richartz-Museum in Cologne, he became an assistant at the Gemäldegalerie der Staatlichen Museen, Berlin, in 1896. He became Deputy Director in 1904 and Director in 1924; from 1908 he was head of the Kupferstichkabinett. With Wilhelm von Bode he systematically increased the holdings of the Berlin museums and donated a number of important works to the Gemäldegalerie and Kupferstichkabinett. In 1933 he left museum service and in 1939 emigrated to Amsterdam. Friedländer, who had a strongly positivistic education, was regarded as a severe critic of Giovanni Morelli’s method of art analysis, most notably represented in German-speaking countries by Franz Wickhoff. Friedländer wrote over 600 books and articles, especially on early German and early Netherlandish art, and a monograph on ...

Article

British, 20th century, male.

Born 1801; died 1876.

Draughtsman, engraver, illustrator, writer. Figures, scenes with figures, local scenes, costume studies.

Edward William Lane was trained in engraving. Recognised as a great scholar in the Arab world and an excellent artist, he was above all a man with a passion for Egypt, which he discovered between ...

Article

[Oury, Jules]

(b Montauban, Tarn-et-Garonne, May 12, 1872; d Montricoux, Tarn-et-Garonne, Sept 7, 1931).

French painter, printmaker and poet. He was the son of a jeweller and at an early age learnt how to produce lithographs and etchings. He quickly established a reputation as a creator of illuminated Symbolist works such as the gouache The Monster (1897; Paris, Flamand-Charbonnier priv. col.; see 1972 exh. cat., p. 64). This was executed in an Art Nouveau style and depicted the common Symbolist theme of woman as the destructive temptress of man. Four works, including this, were shown at the sixth Salon de la Rose + Croix at the Galerie Georges Petit in Paris (1897), and he had similar works published in periodicals such as L’Estampe moderne, L’Aube and Le Courrier français.

Marcel-Lenoir’s first paintings were produced with a palette knife or by using paint straight from the tube, as in A Review in the Cours Foucault in Montauban (1907; Toulouse, Mus. Augustins). He produced other townscapes also, such as ...

Article

Sarah Barter Bailey

(b London, Aug 26, 1783; d Goodrich Court, Hereford & Worcs, April 2, 1848).

English lawyer, collector and historian. He practised as a barrister. In 1815 he published, with Charles Hamilton Smith (1776–1859), The Costume of the Original Inhabitants of the British Islands, which brought him into contact with a group of antiquaries and collectors, including Francis Douce, Sir Walter Scott and James Robinson Planché (1796–1880), who devoted themselves to the study of the Middle Ages.

Meyrick collected and studied arms and armour all his life, but it was the publication of A Critical Inquiry into Antient Armour (1824) that established his reputation as an authority on the subject. In 1826 he advised on the arrangement of the collection in the Tower of London, which he had criticized severely, and two years later he performed a similar service for the Royal Collection at Windsor Castle. His own collection was regularly available to students in London (Richard Parkes Bonington and Delacroix visited in ...

Article

French, 20th century, male.

Born 25 July 1894, in Besançon.

Painter, engraver, illustrator, lithographer, art writer. Murals, stage sets, stage costumes, posters.

Pierre Noury was a pupil of J.-P. Laurens at the Académie Julian in Paris. He first exhibited in Paris at the Salon des Artistes Français, then from ...

Article

French, 19th century, male.

Born 7 September 1802, in Couëron (Loire-Atlantique); died 1857, in Pierrefitte-sur-Seine.

Draughtsman, painter, illustrator, palaeontologist, ethnologist, zoologist. Landscapes, figures, scenes with figures, costume studies, natural history (animals/botanical subjects). Maps.

The father of Orbigny-Dessalines, Charles-Marie d'Orbigny was a surgeon in the navy and also a naturalist who initiated Jean-Jacques Audubon into ornithology between ...