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Art Nouveau Architecture Movement

Updated on January 15, 2014

Art Nouveau Architecture

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The Youthful Style and Global Art Movement


The Art Nouveau Movement is a period of immense creativity around the turn of the twentieth century. It was an international wave that swept across the architectural construction industry, palette painters, cabinet and home furnishings craftsmen, sculptures, and cast-metal worlds, for a fifteen year span. From 1890-1905 youthful creativity reached new heights as many artists forged ahead as pioneers of the Art Nouveau period. This time was a period of inspiration, creativity, and adventure for inspiring men and women, wanting to make a positive yet unique hand print on European architecture. Strictly speaking this art movement raised the bar for any other art movement hereafter, and at the end of its fifteen year time span, the results are still unbelievably magical and simply marvelous.


Art Nouveau Inspirations

1904 Flight Cage built for the St. Louis World's Fair.  Photo courtesy of the St. Louis Zoo
1904 Flight Cage built for the St. Louis World's Fair. Photo courtesy of the St. Louis Zoo | Source

Art Nouveau Sculpture

Iris, Messenger of the Gods, also known as Another Voice, Called Iris, modeled ca. 1895, this bronze cast 1965 Auguste Rodin (French, 1840–1917)
Iris, Messenger of the Gods, also known as Another Voice, Called Iris, modeled ca. 1895, this bronze cast 1965 Auguste Rodin (French, 1840–1917)

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FYI Trivia about the Jugendstil Movement

  • The magazine Jugend spread the stylish movement across Germany and into Belgium. It is credited for advancing the artistic design style, and it flourished in Belgium during its earlier time period. Hence the fact that the Art Nouveau movement is also known as the Jugendstil movement. The Jugend magazine captivated readers not only in Europe- but across the Atlantic and even into America. The wonderful individualism that artist were now commissioned to create, brought forth projects like that of Hector Guimard's metro entrances, which can still be seen throughout Paris, France.
  • The ocean-liner the Titanic ornate staircase and d├ęcor was considered some of Europe's best representations of Art Nouveau.
  • Sometime during the early 1920s Art Nouveau design started to fall by the wayside, making room for two other far reaching European art movements: Modernist Movement and the Futurism Movement of the mid-twentieth century. However, Art Nouveau is still credited for being the father of the American Psychedelic Art movement of the mid 1960s and early 1970s.
  • Ironically out of all three of these creativity movements, music has been the causative agent, which breached the vast water barrier of the Atlantic Ocean, and created the first ever, collective, internationally recognized movement.
  • Art Nouveau/Jugendstil is the bridge that ultimately united the periods of Neoclassicism to the Modernist movement.
  • Its strongest influence can be seen in the historic center of Riga, Latvia. Riga is said to be home to the finest collection of Art Nouveau inspired buildings in Europe- while New York City, New York is home to some of America's, finest representations of this unique period of creativity.
  • An Art Nouveau inspired "Flight Cage" was built for the St. Louis World's Fair in St. Louis, Missouri USA of 1904. It still is in use today, and be visited free at the zoo located in Forest Park, St. Louis Area in Missouri, USA.


A BBC Documentary on Art Nouveau

Riga, Lativa

Capitol of Art Nouveau Architecture.
Capitol of Art Nouveau Architecture.

The Birthplace of Art Nouveau

A map of Riga, Lativa
A map of Riga, Lativa

Where it all began in Riga, Lativa

The Republic of Latvia is located in the center on the Baltic States, just south of Sweden. The capital city is known far and wide across Europe, because it is a crossroad between Eastern and Western Europe. Riga was founded in 1201 AD and is approximately 191 square miles. The average temperature is 24 degrees Fahrenheit.

During the 14th century Riga developed as an important asset to transporting goods to the East. In operation still, Riga's fame came along the railways gathering an independent reputation as an important transportation district. The city is also known for it's role in the Art Nouveau and Modern architectural and cultural movements. The city's renown values and highly sophisticated labor continue to make Riga, the vibrant city that stands in existence today.



Modern Art Period

The Horse, 1971 Salah cAbd al-Karim (Egyptian, 1925–1988) Scrap iron and motorcycle parts
The Horse, 1971 Salah cAbd al-Karim (Egyptian, 1925–1988) Scrap iron and motorcycle parts

Modernism:

"A multifaceted artist and designer, Salah cAnd al-Karim was active in various disciplines and associated with artists from different groups. He made significant contributions to major urban projects like the Cairo Metro and the Cairo Millennium Project, as well as in theatrical set design. As a sculptor, cAnd al-Karim produced a large body of sculptures made of welded scrap metals depicting a range of subjects, from crucifixions to bestiaries. His works are representative of sculpture in the 1960s, when traditional metalsmith crafts and casting techniques were explored and re-utilized. His bestiary series, which includes The Horse, is noted for its aggressive expression, conveyed through the use of sharp metal pieces of machinery recycled to form the characteristic anatomy of each figure. Their primitive violence was inspired by African sculpture, while also reflecting Egypt's expanding industrialization and the tense political climate."-http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/egma/hd_egma.htm

What was Neoclassicism?

Influential theoretical and historical writings contributed as strongly as the artifacts themselves in the Neoclassical Period. Artists brought forth old ideas and painting styles of the Greco-Roman Period of antiquity.

Comments

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  • salt profile image

    salt 

    8 years ago from australia

    love the art nouveau

  • Shelly Bryant profile image

    Shelly Bryant 

    8 years ago from Singapore and/or Shanghai

    Wow! Excellent.

  • profile image

    calfcreek 

    9 years ago

    Thanks for this. As an architect it was a joy to stumble upon. Oh for a time when aesthetics in design was not a dirty word and trim instead of a 'reveal' was not sacrilage!

    Have a great day!

  • KevCC profile image

    KevCC 

    9 years ago

    Good stuff, I'm a real lover of Art Nouveau.

  • RKHenry profile imageAUTHOR

    RKHenry 

    9 years ago from Neighborhood museum in Somewhere, USA

    Thanks for reading this hub Dolores. I am glad you enjoyed it. You are absolutely right, they just don't build'em like they use too!

  • Dolores Monet profile image

    Dolores Monet 

    9 years ago from East Coast, United States

    RKHenry, thanks for sharing those beautiful photos. Art Nouveau was such a sentuous, lovely style and it's a shame so many architectural examples of it are in decay or being torn down. They just don't make them like that anymore.

  • RKHenry profile imageAUTHOR

    RKHenry 

    9 years ago from Neighborhood museum in Somewhere, USA

    I hear ya! lol. I'm actually getting ready to work on a new one right now.

  • Cris A profile image

    Cris A 

    9 years ago from Manila, Philippines

    RK

    You must start getting used to feeling pleased with yourself for you have been consistently churning out great hubs! Keep em' coming. And NO let up, y'hear? :D

  • RKHenry profile imageAUTHOR

    RKHenry 

    9 years ago from Neighborhood museum in Somewhere, USA

    HI Tony! Thanks for dropping by.

    CrisA, I'm very pleased with myself, that you liked this hub. Your opinion means a lot. Thanks for commenting and reading this hub.

  • Cris A profile image

    Cris A 

    9 years ago from Manila, Philippines

    I love this hub as art nouveau is one of the most interesting art movements that spilled over from high art to metalwork, to ceramics to textile even. And what makes this hub more interesting is that  you localized the movement in Latvia which is quite far from Paris where the movement derived its name from Sigfried Bing's gallery. Good job! Thanks for sharing :D

  • tonymac04 profile image

    Tony McGregor 

    9 years ago from South Africa

    Great Hub on a subject that fascinates mde - art history.

    Thanks

    Love and peace

    Tony

  • GeneriqueMedia profile image

    GeneriqueMedia 

    9 years ago from Earth

    Haha, I'm blushing. Hopefully if my audience continues to climb, your readership will grow too. ;)

    I plan to take all those who interact with me on a friendly manner kicking and screaming to the top with me. If I make it to the top. But I'm not going to even worry about that.

  • RKHenry profile imageAUTHOR

    RKHenry 

    9 years ago from Neighborhood museum in Somewhere, USA

    Glad I could help. I have to say, I like your stuff and am a huge fan of yours.

    Here's a shout out for GeneriqueMedia!! If you haven't checked out Generique's profile yet, I highly recommend that you do!

  • GeneriqueMedia profile image

    GeneriqueMedia 

    9 years ago from Earth

    Thank you, too. Actually, you point out something I've yet to master--embedding links into the text. I think I see how its done, now that I think about it...thank you, too, for showing me this better way of doing things. =)

  • RKHenry profile imageAUTHOR

    RKHenry 

    9 years ago from Neighborhood museum in Somewhere, USA

    Thanks GeneriqueMedia!!!

  • GeneriqueMedia profile image

    GeneriqueMedia 

    9 years ago from Earth

    No, seriously, don't mention it. Pass it along. =)

    But I do appreciate the mention ;) *bow*

  • RKHenry profile imageAUTHOR

    RKHenry 

    9 years ago from Neighborhood museum in Somewhere, USA

    I hooked your name up too. I don't know why that escaped my mind. I owe you one!

  • GeneriqueMedia profile image

    GeneriqueMedia 

    9 years ago from Earth

    Don't mention it. I love to help out, where possible. Else, I try not to say much...or if I do, its a joke.

    Be piling through your other stuff,

    GLM

    P.S.

    Don't be ashamed or overwhelmed by trying to link more of your articles together. It builds readership. =)

  • RKHenry profile imageAUTHOR

    RKHenry 

    9 years ago from Neighborhood museum in Somewhere, USA

    Very good idea! Thanks.

  • GeneriqueMedia profile image

    GeneriqueMedia 

    9 years ago from Earth

    Now...link it constructively into your HubNugget article. ;)

    Well done.

    P.S.

    Thanks for the mention. =) You shall be soon, too.

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