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Article

Iain Boyd Whyte

(b Hamburg, April 14, 1868; d Berlin, Feb 27, 1940).

German architect, designer and painter. Progressing from painting and graphics to product design and architecture, Behrens achieved his greatest successes with his work for the Allgemeine Elektrizitäts-Gesellschaft (AEG), in which he reconciled the Prussian Classicist tradition with the demands of industrial fabrication.

After attending the Realgymnasium in Altona, he began his painting studies in 1886 at the Kunstakademie in Karlsruhe. From there he moved to Düsseldorf, where he studied with Ferdinand Brütt. In December 1889 Behrens married Lilli Krämer, and the following year the couple moved to Munich, where he continued his studies with Hugo Kotschenreiter (1854–1908). Behrens was one of the founder-members of the Munich Secession (see Secession, §1) in 1893 and, shortly afterwards, a founder of the more progressive Freie Vereinigung Münchener Künstler, with Otto Eckmann, Max Slevogt, Wilhelm Trübner and Lovis Corinth. He also joined the circle associated with the magazine Pan, which included Otto Julius Bierbaum, Julius Meier-Graefe, Franz Blei, Richard Dehmel and Otto Eckmann....

Article

Liana Paredes-Arend

(b 1862; d 1933).

French designer. He was a barrister by profession, and his legal training is perhaps reflected in his furniture designs, which are solid in construction, each part being carefully conceived to relate to the whole. He published his theories about avant-garde furniture and became established as an advocate of the modern school. Although known almost exclusively for his furniture, he also designed a wide range of objects and decorative schemes in an elegant Art Nouveau style.

Early in his career Gaillard collaborated in S. Bing’s fashionable Art Nouveau shop in Paris. Together with Georges de Feure and Edouard Colonna he created interiors and furniture for Bing’s pavilion, Art Nouveau Bing (destr.), at the Exposition Universelle of 1900 in Paris. Under Bing’s direction these artists carried out an aesthetic programme that laid claim to ‘the old French tradition’ infused with ‘a lively spirit of modernity’. Gaillard was responsible for three rooms in the pavilion: the vestibule, dining-room and bedroom. French precedents, especially elements from the Rococo style, were freely used as a source of inspiration. In the vestibule Gaillard installed a mosaic floor, bold pink draperies and a stencilled frieze that effectively set off a walnut portemanteau with mirrored back and shelves. The dining-room was furnished in walnut, ornamented with scrolled foliage and panelled wainscot, beneath a mural painted by the Spanish artist ...

Article

Sherban Cantacuzino

(b Lyon, 1867; d New York, May 20, 1942).

French architect, furniture designer and writer. After attending the Ecole Nationale des Arts Décoratifs in Paris, in 1885 he entered the Ecole des Beaux-Arts; he left four years later without a diploma, however, to work for a builder as both architect and site craftsman. The influence of Eugène-Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc is evident in his early works, particularly the Ecole du Sacré-Coeur (1895), in which the exposed cast-iron structure of V-shaped columns is an adaptation of a drawing taken from Viollet-le-Duc’s Entretiens sur l’architecture (1863–72). These early commissions, built in a picturesque and eclectic manner, culminated in the Castel Béranger block of flats, Paris, where his first use of the Art Nouveau style appeared in its decorative elements. He visited Brussels in 1895, where he met Victor Horta, whose Maison du Peuple was then under construction. After seeing Horta’s work Guimard made changes to the original neo-Gothic decorative elements of the Castel Béranger, introducing a colourful mixture of facing materials and organically derived embellishments, based on his belief that decoration is the more effective for being non-representational. Between ...

Article

Eric Hennaut

(b Brussels, Jan 7, 1854; d Brussels, March 6, 1936).

Belgian architect and designer. He was the son of a joiner and cabinetmaker and began his career as an interior and furniture designer. His lack of academic training allowed him to join up quickly with the precursors of the Art Nouveau style. In 1895 he exhibited several chairs at the second Salon de la Libre Esthétique; this work followed by the design of a shop in Rue Montagne de la Cour, placed him among the main protagonists of the new style in Brussels. Together with Paul Hankar, Henry Van de Velde and Gustave Serrurier-Bovy, Hobé was commissioned to design the Exposition Congolaise at Tervuren, part of the Exposition Internationale (1897), which became an expression of Belgian Art Nouveau at its peak. During this period, he also undertook a trip abroad and studied traditional cottages in southern England. Their architecture and interiors became his chief source of inspiration, and he built numerous houses in this style in the main holiday resorts of Belgium. The interiors he showed at the Esposizione Internazionale d’Arte Decorativa in Turin (...

Article

Ye. I. Kirichenko

(Nikolayevich)

(b Simbirsk [formerly Ul’yanovsk], Feb 7, 1862; d ?1918).

Russian architect, designer and teacher. He studied at the Institute of Civil Engineers in St Petersburg from 1883 to 1888, and then in 1890 he went to Moscow, where in a brief, 15-year career he went on to execute more than 60 buildings, as well as designing decorative objects for mass production. His first buildings there are examples of late historicism. The Korobkov House on Pyatnitskaya Street and the Geyer Almshouse in Krasnosel’skaya Street, for example, display an eclectic blend of method, have a rich plasticity of volume, a slightly exaggerated sculptural quality in the architectural forms, and appeal to the legacy of Renaissance, Baroque and Romanesque architecture. From the late 1890s, however, Kekushev began to work in the Russian version of the Art Nouveau style (Rus. modern). He was one of the style’s pioneers in Russia and one of its leading exponents in Moscow, although some features of his earlier historicist works, such as accentuated plasticity, extensive and weighty forms and fidelity to Baroque and Romanesque motifs, continued to appear in his work. This is the case with a series of private residences (...

Article

Iain Boyd Whyte

(b Seifhennersdorf, Jan 19, 1874; d Berlin, Aug 17, 1968).

German architect and furniture designer. He attended the Kunstgewerbeschule in Dresden (1886–94), before moving to Munich, where he studied with Paul Hoecker (1854–1910) and Wilhelm von Diez (1839–1907), and drew caricatures for the journals Jugend and Simplicissimus, as a colleague of Olaf Gulbransson and Thomas Theodor Heine. With Peter Behrens, Hermann Obrist, Bernhard Pankok, Richard Riemerschmid and others, Paul was a founder-member of the Vereinigte Werkstätten für Kunst im Handwerk in Munich, a group dedicated to the production of well-designed furniture and works of decorative art. Paul’s early furniture designs, although aligned to Jugendstil in general concept, resisted the excessive curves and tentacles favoured by contemporary French and Belgian designers. Around 1904 Paul rejected Jugendstil in favour of a rectilinear, Neo-Biedermeier manner. His interiors for a hunting-room (see Günther, pls 58–60) at the Exposition Universelle in Paris in 1900 and for a study (see Günther, pls 75–8) at the World’s Fair (Louisiana Purchase International Exposition) in St Louis in ...