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Article

Michèle Lavallée

[Fr.: ‘new art’]

Decorative style of the late 19th century and the early 20th that flourished principally in Europe and the USA. Although it influenced painting and sculpture, its chief manifestations were in architecture and the decorative and graphic arts, the aspects on which this survey concentrates. It is characterized by sinuous, asymmetrical lines based on organic forms; in a broader sense it encompasses the geometrical and more abstract patterns and rhythms that were evolved as part of the general reaction to 19th-century historicism. There are wide variations in the style according to where it appeared and the materials that were employed.

Art Nouveau has been held to have had its beginnings in 1894 or 1895. A more appropriate date would be 1884, the year the progressive group Les XX was founded in Belgium, and the term was used in the periodical that supported it, Art Moderne: ‘we are believers in Art Nouveau’. The origin of the name is usually attributed to ...

Article

Valerie Holman

(b Mennecy, Seine-et-Oise, Feb 3, 1895; d Paris, June 6, 1979).

French painter, sculptor, draughtsman, graphic artist, ceramicist and tapestry designer. He attended the Ecole des Arts Décoratifs, Paris, from 1911, until he joined the army in 1915. After World War I he devoted himself primarily to painting. In 1922 he met Juan Gris with whose encouragement his early Matisse-influenced rhythmical compositions acquired greater stability. In the late 1920s he was promoted by Tériade as a successor to the Cubists, with such works as The Mirror (1929; Paris, Pompidou), in which a highly simplified figure and its mirror-image are defined by patches of flat colour and fragments of linear contrast, and by the 1940s he was seen as one of the major representatives of the Ecole de Paris. In the 1950s his earlier predilection for curvilinear shapes gave way to a more angular and dynamic geometry, as in the First Race (1952; Paris, Pompidou). His subject-matter was taken from daily life, with marked preferences for the nude in movement, as in ...

Article

German, 19th – 20th century, male.

Born 14 April 1868, in Hamburg; died 27 February 1940, in Berlin.

Painter, draughtsman, engraver, architect, designer, decorative artist, graphic designer. Posters, furniture, wallpaper, carpets, glassware, ceramics, table services, jewellery, silverwork, objets d'art, typefaces.

Jugendstil, functional school.

Die Sieben (Group of Seven), Deutscher Werkbund...

Article

German, 20th century, male.

Active in the USA.

Born 15 March 1883, in Stuttgart; died 29 May 1972, in New York.

Painter, sculptor, graphic designer, poster artist, illustrator, architect, designer, decorative artist. Designs for carpets, advertising art, furniture, lamps, wallpaper.

Jugendstil.

Deutscher Werkbund.

Lucian Bernhard studied painting at the Kunstakademie in Munich, but taught himself design. He was active in Berlin. In ...

Article

Biba  

M. B. Whitaker

British fashion boutique. Established in 1963 by fashion illustrator Barbara Hulanicki (b 1936) as a mail-order catalogue, Biba swiftly evolved into a popular London boutique, and finally, from 1973 to 1975, a short-lived department store. Biba offered eclectic and affordable clothing, accessories, cosmetics and other products to students and teenagers, consequently becoming a fundamental driving force behind street fashion during the 1960s and 1970s (see fig.).

Barbara Hulanicki, born in Warsaw, worked as a fashion illustrator in London for a variety of magazines in the late 1950s and early 1960s. This introduced her to the privileged and dictatorial world of haute couture, which turned her away from high fashion. With the encouragement of her husband, Steven Fitz-Simon, she began designing and started the Biba Postal Boutique in 1963. This mail-order catalogue, named after her sister, was a quick success. Her most popular design for the catalogue was a gingham frock and kerchief that later became a staple of the Biba shop (...

Article

Ruth Rosengarten

(António Teixeira Bastos Nunes)

(b Lisbon, Sept 18, 1899; d Lisbon, Aug 18, 1982).

Portuguese painter, printmaker and designer of tapestries and tile panels. Known primarily as a ‘painter of Lisbon’, he began his artistic career as an illustrator and cartoonist as well as writing a weekly satirical page (1928–50) in the newspaper O sempre fixe. He visited Paris in 1929, 1930–1 and again in 1937, when he was impressed by a retrospective exhibition of the work of van Gogh, whose influence is evident in Botelho’s scenes of urban squalor of the late 1930s. He had begun to depict calm, unpopulated views of Lisbon in the early 1930s, for example Side View of the Castle (1935; Lisbon, Mus. Cidade), and from the early 1940s concentrated almost exclusively on this theme. The compositions became increasingly crisp and planar and the piling up of volumes and compression of space increasingly stylized, especially after he began to paint from memory in 1949. The tonalities of Botelho’s paintings remained consistently pale, as in ...

Article

German, 19th – 20th century, male.

Active also active in France.

Born 6 March 1866, in Flensburg; died 5 January 1945, in Wiesbaden.

Painter, engraver, draughtsman, decorative designer, graphic designer. Portraits, landscapes, urban landscapes, still-lifes, flowers, decorative motifs. Designs for carpets, designs (furniture/posters/jewellery/book-binding).

Jugendstil.

Die Sieben (Group of Seven)...

Article

David Blayney Brown

[Frantz]

(b Rostock, Mecklenburg-Schwerin, 1582; d London, 1658).

German painter, designer, illustrator and printmaker. He probably studied first in the Low Countries. He was perhaps in Denmark c.1611, but then spent four years in Italy, mainly in Rome and Venice, where he met the English ambassador Sir Henry Wotton. By 1617 he was living in Copenhagen; an inscribed drawing of Apollo and Marsyas from this period is in the Nationalmuseet, Copenhagen. Between 1618 and 1623 Cleyn was employed by Christian IV at Rosenborg Slot, decorating the King’s writing closet with pastoral landscapes, Venetian views, genre scenes and grotesque designs. Commissions followed for larger subject pictures (which show pronounced Venetian influence) and for similar decorative schemes for the royal castles at Frederiksborg (Fireworks), Christiansborg (Children on their Way to School) and Kronborg. In 1623 Cleyn visited England, with a letter of introduction to Prince Charles (later Charles I) from the English envoy in Copenhagen, Sir Robert Anstruther. In the Prince’s absence in Spain, he was received by James I, who wished to retain his services for himself and sent him back to Copenhagen with a request to Christian IV to release him. Work in progress kept Cleyn in Denmark until late in ...

Article

French, 20th century, male.

Born 14 February 1925, in Alexandria, Egypt.

Painter, engraver, illustrator, graphic designer. Posters, wall decorations, designs for tapestries, designs for carpets.

From 1942, Jean Cortot studied under Othon Friesz at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière, and together with Busse, Calmettes, Patrix and others, was a co-founder of the ...

Article

Alberto Cernuschi

(b Montauban, Sept 30, 1894; d Perpignan, July 21, 1972).

French painter, printmaker, stage designer, illustrator and tapestry designer. He was encouraged to study art by Emile-Antoine Bourdelle, to whom he showed his drawings at the age of 16, and was taught by him at the Ecole de Dessin à la Manufacture des Gobelins. From 1912 to 1914 he attended the Ecole des Arts Décoratifs in Montauban, and after serving in the infantry during World War I he moved to Paris, where he showed his work regularly at such exhibitions as the Salon des Indépendants and the Salon d’Automne.

Desnoyer lived and worked among the Cubists, but like the Fauves he favoured bright primary colours, marrying colour and line in landscapes, still-lifes and portraits. His debt to both movements is visible in paintings such as La Foire du Trône (1927; Paris, Pompidou). He also produced an illustrated edition of La Fontaine’s Dies Irae (Editions Mortier, 1947) and stage designs for the Opéra Comique in Paris, for example for Henri Barrand’s ...

Article

S. Kontha

(b Budapest, April 17, 1904; d Budapest, Jan 26, 1986).

Hungarian painter, illustrator, mosaicist, tapestry designer, stage designer, poster designer, printmaker, sculptor, teacher and administrator. From 1922 to 1929 he studied at the Hungarian Academy of Fine Arts (Magyar Kepzőmüvészeti Főiskolá) in Budapest under Gyula Rudnay (1878–1957) and János Vaszary (1867–1939). In the mid-1920s he became acquainted with Béla Uitz’s General Ludd series (1923; Budapest, N.G.) and in Venice he saw the work of such Russian avant-garde artists as Rodchenko and El Lissitzky and such Italian Futurists as Severini. In 1926 in Paris he studied the works of Léger, Braque, Picasso and others in the collection of Léonce Rosenberg. He was also influenced by the art of Brancusi and Joseph Csáky, as well as André Breton’s Manifeste du surréalisme (Paris, 1924). From the outset, Hincz’s work revealed a number of different objectives. Although he experimented with abstraction, the reference to the figure is always present in one form or another. His profound interest in humanity and its social interaction was based on, and motivated by, this interest in the figure. His early paintings are expressionist in mood and are composed of flattened forms in a shallow space in a manner reminiscent of Cubo–Futurist art. Elements of Purism and Surrealism are also present. After World War II he became increasingly preoccupied with realism, political agitprop art and the problems inherent in creating new symbols; a study trip to Korea, China and Vietnam in ...

Article

John Mawer

(b Bodiam, E. Sussex, Feb 17, 1849; d London, Aug 21, 1930).

English designer. He was educated at Marlborough College and New College, Oxford, where he studied drawing under John Ruskin. Although he took Holy Orders in 1873, he continued to practise as a designer and eventually gave up his clerical duties in 1882, the year in which Arthur Mackmurdo founded the Century Guild of Artists, London. In 1883 Mackmurdo and Image opened the Century Guild Workshops. Image painted panels and inscriptions and designed inlaid decoration for furniture made by the Guild and also produced the title-page woodcut for its magazine The Hobby Horse, first published in 1884, which he co-edited from 1886 to 1892. The Guild itself was dissolved in 1888. He undertook design commissions in several fields—stained glass, typography, mosaic and embroidery (for the Royal School of Needlework). He also became active within the Art Workers’ Guild, London, of which he became master in 1900. In the same year he began working for the Glasgow furniture manufacturers ...

Article

German, 20th century, male.

Born 1874, in Neustadt bei Leipzig; died 1947, in Erbach/Westerwald.

Painter, draughtsman, interior designer, graphic designer. Designs (furniture, fabrics, porcelain, precious metals, jewels).

Jugendstil.

Erich Kleinhempel first trained with Oskar Haebler in his graphics studio in Dresden, then entered the Kunstgewerbeschule in Dresden, where he studied ...

Article

(b Rouen, Nov 11, 1738; d Paris, May 7, 1826).

French painter, illustrator and writer. He began his studies in Rouen and, at 17, won first prize for drawing at the city’s Académie. Shortly afterwards he travelled to Paris, entering the Académie Royale de Peinture et de Sculpture as a student of Jean-Baptiste-Marie Pierre. In 1767–8 he was in Rome, a fact confirmed by a number of dated and inscribed drawings and paintings, including the pen, ink and wash drawing Landscape Inspired by the Gardens of the Villa d’Este at Tivoli (Paris, Ecole N. Sup. B.-A.). He was in Switzerland in 1776, where he spent several years drawing illustrations for Beát Zurlauben’s Tableau de la Suisse ou voyage pittoresque fait dans les treize cantons du Corps Helvétique (Paris, 1780–86). In 1780, having returned to France, he was approved (agréé) by the Académie Royale and received (reçu) in 1785 with Jupiter Asleep on Mount Ida (Paris, Ecole N. Sup. B.-A.). Thereafter he regularly exhibited moralistic pictures at the Salon until ...

Article

Antoinette Le Normand-Romain

(b Banyuls-sur-Mer, Oct 8, 1861; d Perpignan, Sept 24, 1944).

French sculptor, painter, designer and illustrator. He began his career as a painter and tapestry designer, but after c. 1900 devoted himself to three-dimensional work, becoming one of the most important sculptors of the 20th century. He concentrated almost exclusively on the nude female figure in the round, consciously wishing to strip form of all literary associations and architectural context. Although inspired by the Classical tradition of Greek and Roman sculpture, his figures have all the elemental sensuousness and dignity associated with the Mediterranean peasant.

Maillol first intended to become a painter and went to Paris in 1881, where he lived in extreme poverty. Three years later the Ecole des Beaux-Arts finally accepted him as a pupil, where he began studies under Alexandre Cabanel. He found the teaching there discouraging and his early painted work was more strongly influenced by Pierre Puvis de Chavannes, Paul Gauguin, and the Nabis group which he joined around ...

Article

(b Aix-en-Provence, Feb 10, 1907; d 1997).

French painter, illustrator, stage designer and tapestry designer. He started painting at the age of 13 in spite of his family’s categorical opposition to art as a profession, and six years later he moved to Paris to pursue his vocation. He was self-taught. He began exhibiting at the Salon d’Automne in Paris in 1932 and at the Salon des Indépendants from 1933, when he was producing stark realist paintings of figures in desolate landscapes, such as The Strangers (1935–6; Paris, Pompidou).

Marchand was prone to striking changes in his style and technique, ranging from Ingres-style drawings between 1933 and 1937 to a developing interest in the 1940s in more textured surfaces and a more stylized form of representation, as in Landscape with Olive Trees (1943; see 1963 exh. cat., no. 18), in which the angular branches of the trees create an almost abstract pattern. In the early 1950s, in such works as ...

Article

(b Paris, May 21, 1846; d Paris, Nov 14, 1920).

French painter and illustrator. He was the son of the painter and art critic Charles-Olivier Merson (1822–1902) and trained initially at the Ecole de Dessin in Paris under Gustave Adolphe Chassevent (1818–1901) and then at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts under Isidore-Alexandre-Augustin Pils. He made his début at the Salon in 1867 and won the Grand Prix de Rome in 1869 with the melodramatic work, the Soldier of Marathon (1869; Paris, Ecole N. Sup. B.-A.). As a prizewinner he then spent five years in Italy, where he was impressed and influenced by the works of the Italian Primitives, as is apparent in such works as St Edmund, King and Martyr (1871; Troyes, Mus. B.-A. & Archéol.), with its muted colours and rigid composition. In the Salon of 1875 he exhibited Sacrifice for the Country, St Michael, which had been commissioned as a design for a ...

Article

Fani-Maria Tsigakou

[Yiannis, Giannis]

(b Arta, April 23, 1916; d Athens, Dec 20, 2009).

Greek painter, printmaker, illustrator, stage designer and decorative artist. From 1931 to 1936 he studied painting and printmaking at the Higher School of Fine Arts in Athens under Konstantinos Parthenis and Yannis Kefallinos (1893–1957). As soon as he graduated he participated in the exhibition of Greek printmakers that was organized in Czechoslovakia in 1936. The same year, on a scholarship from the Academy of Athens, he went to Rome and then to Paris to study at the Ecole Supérieure des Beaux-Arts and the Ecole des Arts et Métiers. He returned to Athens in 1940, when he participated in the last pre-war panhellenic exhibition, in which he was awarded the first prize. During the period of the German occupation (1941–4) he started painting portraits to earn his living. In these his restricted palette and the opposition of light and shadow with as little half-tone as possible reveal his concern with the flattening of form and space. His post-war canvases are painted with a directness of execution and solidly modelled forms. His concern with the structure of form led him gradually to geometrical compositions. In ...

Article

Peter Stansky

(b Walthamstow [now in London], March 24, 1834; d London, Oct 3, 1896).

English designer, writer and activist. His importance as both a designer and propagandist for the arts cannot easily be overestimated, and his influence has continued to be felt throughout the 20th century. He was a committed Socialist whose aim was that, as in the Middle Ages, art should be for the people and by the people, a view expressed in several of his writings. After abandoning his training as an architect, he studied painting among members of the Pre-Raphaelites. In 1861 he founded his own firm, Morris, Marshall, Faulkner & Co. (from 1875 Morris & Co.), which produced stained glass, furniture, wallpaper and fabrics (see §3 below). Morris’s interests constantly led him into new activities such as his last enterprise, the Kelmscott Press (see §5 below). In 1950 his home at Walthamstow became the William Morris Gallery. The William Morris Society was founded in 1956, and it publishes a biannual journal and quarterly newsletter....

Article

Canadian, 20th century, male.

Born 1927, in Montreal; died 1991.

Painter, sculptor, illustrator, decorative designer. Stage sets, frescoes, posters, fabric designs, advertising art.

Groupe des Automatistes.

Jean-Paul Mousseau was initially a pupil of Brother Jérôme at the Collège Notre Dame in Montreal, then studied in the studio of Borduas ...