Glossary of Printing Terms:
Art Nouveau

A decorative art style, especially associated with sinuous vines and tendril motifs-curving, often-swirling shapes based on flowing organic forms.

It was prevalent between 1895 to 1905, and was an outgrowth of the Arts and Crafts Movement, which emphasized applying art to practical, daily life objects.

The name Art Nouveau originated in France, derived from a modern-design shop of S. Bing, L’Art Nouveau (the New Art) that opened in Paris in 1895. However, the style originated more than a decade earlier, and by the end of the 19th century had various names in a variety of countries: ‘Jugendstil’ in Germany; ‘Stile Liberty’ in Italy; ‘Modernista’ in Spain and ‘Sezessionstil’ in Austria.

Representative French artists including Pierre Bonnard, Edvard Munch, and Henri Toulouse-Lautrec leaned on earlier styles including Rococo, Gothic, and Oriental. The style quickly spread to the United States and other countries. In America, the style of Art Nouveau was reflected in the paintings and illustrations of Edwin Austin Abbey, Louis Comfort Tiffany, Maxfield Parrish and Alfonse Mucha. Louis Sullivan was a leader in architectural design.

Art Nouveau Glass, with classic, simple lines, was a reaction against the heavily decorated Victorian Art Glass and was made popular by Tiffany and Company, New York jewelers, and Steuben Glass Works in Corning, New York.


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