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Article

Kenneth Archer

[Rosenberg, Lev (Samoylovich)]

(b Grodno, Belarus, May 10, 1866; d Paris, Dec 27, 1924).

Russian painter and stage designer of Belorussian birth. Born into a middle-class Jewish family, Bakst was educated in St Petersburg, attending a gymnasium and then the Academy of Arts (1883–6). He began professional life as a copyist and illustrator of teaching materials but quickly moved on to illustration for popular magazines. His tastes were influenced and horizons enlarged when he met Alexandre Benois and his circle in 1890. Bakst travelled regularly to various countries in Europe and North Africa and studied in Paris with a number of notable artists including the French Orientalist painter Jean-Léon Gérôme at the Académie Julian and, from 1893 to 1896, the Finnish landscape painter Albert Edelfelt. Returning to St Petersburg, he became active as a book designer and fashionable portrait painter. With Benois and Serge Diaghilev he was a founder and leading member of the World of Art (Mir Iskusstva) group in 1898...

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

Valerio Terraroli

(b Casale Monferrato, March 15, 1859; d Turin, Sept 2, 1933).

Italian sculptor, painter and writer. The leading Art Nouveau sculptor in Italy, he was the son of Giovanni Bistolfi, a wood-carver. Bistolfi first studied (1876–9) at the Accademia di Brera, Milan, under Giosué Argenti (1819–1901), transferring to the Accademia Albertina, Turin, in 1880 for more advanced work under Odoardo Tabacchi. In 1881 Bistolfi received a commission for the Braida family tomb (Turin cemetery), for which he carved the marble figure the Angel of Death, a commission enabling him to open his own studio. During the 1880s Bistolfi worked mainly on small bronze groups, in which he sought to communicate sentiments that had hitherto been expressed only in painting. Like the artists of I Scapigliati, he depicted literary subjects, such as his bronze Washerwomen (Italian priv. col.), inspired by Emile Zola’s novel L’Assommoir (1877). While influenced by Impressionism and by such artists as Daniele Ranzoni, Tranquillo Cremona and Giuseppe Grandi, Bistolfi produced his ...

Article

Marie Demanet

(b Ath, Jan 7, 1875; d Brussels, Sept 1, 1952).

Belgian decorative artist, architect and painter. He began architectural studies at the Koninklijke Academie voor Schone Kunsten in Antwerp but broke off to pursue courses on the decorative arts at the Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts in Brussels, graduating in 1898. The tuition he received there from the painter Constant Montald gave him a taste for mural art and he soon developed a business that specialized in sgraffito painting, a technique that had recently come back into fashion. He completed some 440 design projects, most of which were for building façades and stairways. As an interior designer, painter and draughtsman, Cauchie was influenced by the Arts and Crafts movement and the work of Charles Rennie Mackintosh and the Glasgow style and he produced a variety of work in the applied arts. Towards 1905 his style became more geometrical. It was at this time that he built his own studio and house at Etterbeek, Brussels, in collaboration with the architect ...

Article

Christopher Newall

(b Liverpool, Aug 15, 1845; d Horsham, W. Sussex, March 14, 1915).

English painter, illustrator, designer, writer and teacher. He showed artistic inclinations as a boy and was encouraged to draw by his father, the portrait painter and miniaturist Thomas Crane (1808–59). A series of illustrations to Tennyson’s The Lady of Shalott (Cambridge, MA, Harvard U., Houghton Lib.) was shown first to Ruskin, who praised the use of colour, and then to the engraver William James Linton, to whom Crane was apprenticed in 1859. From 1859 to 1862 Crane learnt a technique of exact and economical draughtsmanship on woodblocks. His early illustrative works included vignette wood-engravings for John R. Capel Wise’s The New Forest: Its History and its Scenery (1862).

During the mid-1860s Crane evolved his own style of children’s book illustration. These so-called ‘toy books’, printed in colour by Edmund Evans, included The History of Jenny Wren and The Fairy Ship. Crane introduced new levels of artistic sophistication to the art of illustration: after ...

Article

M. W. F. Simon Thomas

(b Zwollerkerspel, nr Zwolle, Feb 8, 1866; d Bloemendaal, nr Haarlem, June 14, 1924).

Dutch painter and designer. He studied at the Academie voor Beeldende Kunsten in The Hague, and at the Rijkskunstnijverheidsschool and Rijksnormaalschool in Amsterdam. In 1889–1890 he travelled with T. W. Nieuwenhuis to Berlin, Vienna and Paris. His woodcut design for a diploma for the Vereniging van Boekhandels (Society of Bookshops; 1892) and his decorations for the book Kunst en Samenleving (‘Art and society’), the Dutch edition of Walter Crane’s Claims of Decorative Art (London, 1892), are some of the earliest examples of Nieuwe Kunst. Dijsselhof is thus considered to be one of the most important innovators of this movement. He also designed furniture, wallpaper, embroidery patterns and batik wall hangings. An example of his luxurious, meticulously detailed interiors can be seen in the room he designed for Dr van Hoorn in 1895, the Dijsselhofroom (The Hague, Gemeentemus.). After 1900 he occupied himself mainly with painting, usually depicting underwater scenes of fish and plants....

Article

Laurie A. Stein

(b Hamburg, Nov 19, 1865; d Badenweiler, June 11, 1902).

German designer, illustrator and painter. He trained as a businessman before entering the Kunst- und Gewerbeschule in Hamburg. He studied at the Kunst- und Gewerbeschule in Nuremberg and from 1885 attended the Akademie der Bildenden Künste in Munich. His early paintings are naturalistic landscapes but around 1890 he shifted towards Symbolism (e.g. the Four Ages of Life, 1893–4; untraced). In 1894 he decided to devote himself to the decorative arts. Encouraged by Justus Brinckmann, a collector and museum director, and Friedrich Deneken (later Director of the Kaiser Wilhelm Museum, Krefeld), Eckmann studied the Japanese woodcut collection at the Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, Hamburg. Using traditional Japanese techniques, he began producing his own woodcut designs in 1895. Three Swans on Dark Water (1895; Hamburg, Mus. Kst & Gew.) reflects a general preoccupation with late 19th-century music, art and literature with swans as symbolic images, and they were a frequent motif in many of his subsequent works. Eckmann’s woodcuts, as well as ornamental borders, vignettes, bookplates and other graphic designs, were illustrated in such periodicals as ...

Article

(b Frankenstein nr Breslau [now Wroclaw], Dec 15, 1868; d Munich, 1940).

German painter, illustrator and interior designer. He studied at the Kunstschule in Breslau under the German painter Albrecht Bräuer (1830–97), and later at the Pinakothek in Munich, absorbing the work of the Old Masters. He continued his training in Paris at the Académie Julian (1892–4), and established a studio in Munich (1895). With other non-academic painters of the period he rejected the influence of the French Impressionists and allied with the Symbolist painters of the late 19th century. He drew inspiration from wild places and as a young man travelled to the Baltic Sea and to the Riviera and Brittany coasts. He was fascinated by Norse legends, Grimms’ fairy tales and Johann Gottfried Herder’s Stimmen der Völker, all of which had an impact on his subject-matter. His early paintings of bucolic landscapes with figures were executed in flat, calm colours with well-defined outlines, reminiscent of the work of Pierre Puvis de Chavannes. In a long, prolific career he designed costumes and stage sets, stained glass, ceramics and bookbindings....

Article

Charlotte Moser

[Sluijters, Georges Joseph van; Feuren, Georges van]

(b Paris, Sept 6, 1868; d Paris, Nov 26, 1928).

French designer and painter. Son of a Dutch architect and a Belgian mother, he started out as an actor, costumier and then interior decorator in Paris. In 1894 at the Galerie des Artistes Modernes he exhibited watercolours and paintings of a moderate Symbolist style, typically depicting women in a manner reminiscent of Aubrey Beardsley’s work. Capturing the essence of the feminine spirit became his trademark. With Eugène Gaillard and Edouard Colonna he was selected by Siegfried Bing, founder of the Galeries de l’Art Nouveau, to design rooms for his Pavilion Bing at the Exposition Universelle, Paris (1900). De Feure’s carpets, glassware and furniture designs for the boudoir and toilette were based on the theme of woman, emphasizing delicate lines and elegant sensuality. He later left Bing’s gallery and, as an independent designer, created vide-poche furniture, which contained hidden marquetry compartments. This furniture suggested notions of secrecy and coquetry, themes that de Feure pursued throughout his career....

Article

Joellen Secondo

(b Brussels, Nov 28, 1854; d Helsinki, 1930).

Belgian painter and potter. He studied painting at the Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts et Ecole des Arts Décoratifs in Brussels from 1878 to 1880. He was a founder-member of XX, Les, a group of 20 avant-garde artists who held annual exhibitions of paintings and decorative arts between 1884 and 1895. Initially Finch painted land- and seascapes in the Impressionist style. In 1887—after Seurat and Camille Pissarro exhibited with Les XX—Finch adopted their divisionist painting technique. An early work in the Neo-Impressionist style, the Race Course at Ostende (1888; Helsinki, Athenaeum A. Mus.), shows his unfamiliarity with this new technique. His subsequent proficiency is evident in the work English Coast at Dover (1891; Helsinki, Athenaeum A. Mus.), which also makes use of a border constructed of divisionist dots, a device he borrowed from Seurat. Finch came to excel at rendering the atmospheric effect of the damp climate of the Channel coast—his main subject—through the use of widely spaced dots in related colour values. Finch served as a liaison between ...

Article

Janice Helland

Term denoting the style of works of art produced in Glasgow from c. 1890 to c. 1920 and particularly associated with Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Herbert MacNair and the Macdonald family sisters, Frances and Margaret. The style originated at the Glasgow School of Art, where Francis H. Newbery (1853–1946) became director in 1885. Influenced by the Arts and Crafts Movement, Newbery had a commitment to excellence in art that combined functionalism with beauty while encouraging individuality and experimentation among his students. Within three years he had brought in the Century Guild of Artists’ chief metalworker, William Kellock Brown (1856–1934), to teach modelling and metalwork at the School. Kellock Brown had an intimate understanding of A. H. Mackmurdo’s approach to art, as articulated in the journal The Hobby Horse (launched in spring 1884), which voiced a desire for the unification of the old with the new and for an artistic relationship between abstract lines and masses that would reflect the harmonious whole found in nature. The development of the style was given further impetus by the fact that ...

Article

Josef Maliva

(b Loucká u Ředhoště, nr Roudnice nad Labem, Jan 14, 1872; d Častolovice, nr Rychnov nad Kněžnou, Aug 11, 1941).

Bohemian painter. He studied at the Academy of Fine Arts, Prague, in 1887–91 under Maximilián Pirner, in Munich in 1891–3 under Anton Ažbé and Otto Seitz (1846–1912) and again in Prague until 1894 under Václav Brožík. He spent some time studying in Italy (1902 and 1909) and had numerous one-man exhibitions from 1900 onwards. His early work concentrated on the figure, inspired by lyrical plein-air painting, and for a while he was influenced by Art Nouveau and Symbolism (e.g. Spring Fairy-tale, 1898; Prague, N.G.). Having come into contact with the school of Julius Mařák in 1897, Hudeček devoted himself to landscapes, producing a large group of paintings of the village of Okoř. The works of this period approach the lyricism of the Glasgow School (exhibited Prague, 1903) and the sensuous impressionism of his friend Antonín Slavíček. Hudeček gradually renounced melancholy, symbolic colour harmonies and refined techniques, using his brush with greater flourish and accenting light with more striking colours (e.g. ...

Article

A. Ziffer

(b Munich, Oct 30, 1868; d Munich, Oct 9, 1940).

German painter, illustrator, teacher and poster designer. The son of the painter Christian Jank (1833–88), he attended Simon Hollósy’s private art school in Munich before studying (1891–6) at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste, also in Munich, under Ludwig von Löfftz (1845–1910) and Paul Höcker (1854–1910). From 1896 he exhibited at the Munich Secession, and he became a member of Scholle, Die, founded in 1899. A regular contributor to the journal Jugend and at the forefront of modernism, he made his mark as a humorous illustrator, portraying allegories and scenes from military life. Jank also designed posters (e.g. Underworld, 1896; Berlin, Mus. Dt. Gesch.). He taught at the Damenakademie (1899–1907). Having come to prominence as a portrayer of events from German history with three monumental paintings for Berlin’s Reichstag building (destr.) in 1905, he collaborated with Adolf Münzer (1870–1952) and ...

Article

Peter Vergo

(b Baumgarten, nr Vienna, July 14, 1862; d Vienna, Feb 6, 1918).

Austrian painter and draughtsman. A leading exponent of Art Nouveau, Klimt is considered one of the greatest decorative painters of the 20th century. His depictions of the femme fatale and his drawings treating the theme of female sexuality have assured him a place in the history of erotic art. He is remembered for his role in the formation of the Vienna Secession, the radical group of Austrian artists of which he became the first president in 1897 (see Secession, §3), and also for the frequent scandals and protests that marked his later career. These contrast strikingly with the public and official approval that marked him out as a young artist of promise, even before he graduated from the Vienna Kunstgewerbeschule in 1883.

Klimt was the eldest son of a Viennese engraver and entered the Kunstgewerbeschule, Vienna, in 1876. He studied under the Austrian painters Ferdinand Laufberger (1829–81...

Article

Henry Adams

(b New York, March 31, 1835; d Newport, RI, Nov 14, 1910).

American painter, decorative artist, and writer. He grew up in New York in a prosperous and cultivated French-speaking household. He received his first artistic training at the age of six from his maternal grandfather, an amateur architect and miniature painter. While at Columbia Grammar School, he learnt English watercolour techniques and afterwards studied briefly with George Inness’s teacher, the landscape painter Régis-François Gignoux. In 1856, while touring Europe, he spent a few weeks in Thomas Couture’s studio. Returning to New York via England, he was impressed by the Pre-Raphaelite paintings at the Manchester Art Treasures exhibition of 1857 and later said that they had influenced him when he began to paint. In 1859 he decided to devote himself to art and moved to Newport, RI, to study with William Morris Hunt.

Unlike Hunt, who never broke away from the manner of Couture and Jean-François Millet, La Farge rapidly evolved a highly original and personal style characterized by free brushwork, unusual colour harmonies, and great delicacy of feeling (...

Article

[Christiaan]

(b Amsterdam, May 26, 1878; d Dachau, April 2, 1945).

Dutch painter, designer and applied artist. He trained in design and decorative painting at the Quellinus school and the Rijksschool voor Kunstnijverheid (National School of the Applied Arts) in Amsterdam from 1892 to 1899. He was assigned to assist with the decoration of the Dutch pavilion at the Exposition Universelle in Paris in 1900. A number of his designs for the pavilion were executed in batik, a Javanese technique that had been recently introduced in the Netherlands. In subsequent years Lebeau developed a very personal approach to batiking and within a short time became the leading Dutch artist in this field. His batiked screens in particular were widely acclaimed (examples in Assen, Prov. Mus. Drenthe) and are considered masterpieces of Dutch Jugendstil.

Lebeau is one of the most important representatives of the severe, geometrical trend in Dutch applied arts of the early 20th century. From 1903 he designed damask tablecloths and household linen for the ...

Article

Sabine Kehl-Baierle

(b Vienna, Nov 7, 1863; d Vienna, March 14, 1919).

Austrian painter, decorative artist and printmaker. He was the son of the Bohemian painter Franz Lefler (1831–98), a member of the Künstlerhaus in Vienna. From 1880 to 1884 he studied in Vienna at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste under Christian Griepenkerl (1839–1916) and in Munich at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste under Nikolaos Gysis and Wilhelm von Diez (1839–1907). He first produced genre paintings, fairy-tale motifs and landscapes in the manner of Diez, but from 1895 (two years before the foundation of the Vienna Secession) his work showed Jugendstil tendencies. In 1891 he became a member of the Künstlerhaus in Vienna. As a printmaker he concentrated on commercial art; in the later 1890s he was one of the first Austrian artists to design posters for companies (e.g. Auerlicht, 1896–7; see Schweiger, p. 121), public events and periodicals (e.g. Kunst und Kunsthandwerk). In 1898–9...

Article

Jane Block

(b Brussels, Nov 26, 1865; d Brussels, July 5, 1916).

Belgian painter and decorative artist. He showed a precocious talent, first exhibiting in 1875. His only formal study was at a local school of drawing. Between 1884 and 1886 he showed at the Essor group in Brussels paintings that were based on Dürer and Holbein and closely related to those of Lemmen’s contemporary, Khnopff. When Lemmen became a member of Les XX in 1888 his style developed quickly, influenced principally by French Neo-Impressionism and the English Arts and Crafts Movement. Lemmen adopted the pointillist technique following Seurat’s first showing with Les XX in 1887. His best pointillist canvases include The Carousel (1890–91; priv. col., see Belgian Art, 1880–1914, exh. cat., New York, Brooklyn Mus., 1980, p. 118, fig.) as well as portraits of Julie (1891; Chicago, IL, A. Inst.) and Mme Lemmen (1894–5; Paris, Mus. Orsay).

In the early 1890s Lemmen became a leader in the burgeoning decorative arts movement. In ...

Article

Sabine Kehl-Baierle

(b Liberec, Bohemia [now in Czech Republic], Sept 28, 1874; d Vienna, March 23, 1960).

Austrian painter, printmaker, designer and ceramicist. After being taught to draw at the Gewerbemuseum in Reichenberg, from 1890 to 1900 he studied drawing at the Kunstgewerbeschule in Vienna (now the Hochschule für Angewandte Kunst) under the Austrian Franz von Matsch (1861–1942). In 1909 he was appointed a teacher at the Kunststickereischule in Vienna, and from 1909 to 1935 he was a professor at the Kunstgewerbeschule. In 1906 he founded Wiener Keramik with Michael Powolny. The firm contributed tiles for Josef Hoffmann’s Palais Stoclet in Brussels (1905–11). From 1907 the Wiener Werkstätte took over the distribution and sale of their vases, figurines, boxes and tiles, selling them also in Germany from 1908. In 1913 Wiener Keramik merged with the Künstlerische Werkstätte Franz und Emilie Schleiss in Gmunden to form the Vereinigte Wiener und Gmundner Keramik. In collaborative works by Löffler and Powolny it is often very difficult to establish who did different aspects. Löffler preferred to provide the often fanciful designs, leaving the modelling to other assistants, for example in the figurines ...

Article

Pamela Reekie Robertson

British family of decorative artists and painters. Margaret Macdonald (b Tipton, nr Wolverhampton, 5 Nov 1864; d London, 10 Jan 1933) and her sister Frances (Eliza) Macdonald (b Kidsgrove, nr Stoke-on-Trent, 24 Aug 1873; d Glasgow, 12 Dec 1921) were two of the most original artists working in Glasgow in the 1890s. Together with Charles Rennie Mackintosh and Herbert MacNair they became known as The Four (see Mackintosh, Charles Rennie §2). The group created a distinctive decorative style that was disseminated internationally through exhibitions, in particular the fifth exhibition of the Arts and Crafts Society in London (1896), the eighth exhibition of the Vienna Secession (1900) and the Esposizione Internazionale d’Arte Decorativa in Turin (1902), as well as through periodicals, notably The Studio, Dekorative Kunst, Deutsche Kunst und Dekoration and Ver Sacrum. In this way, though they had few direct imitators, they provided substantial impetus for the development and recognition in Britain and on the Continent of a distinctive ...