Relevant categories: Art Deco
(Above photo - Period art deco cocktail cabinet )
Period art deco refers to the time when the style sprang up across the world, challenging all existing conventions of that time. It lasted between 1925 and 1937 in painting, sculpture, architecture, decorative arts, and graphic arts. The style originated in Paris, France, and quickly spread to the rest of Europe and the world.
Art deco designers and artists sought to infuse geometric, symmetrical, streamlined shapes into their work. That can be seen in pieces of art, furniture, and architecture produced at that particular time. The style contrasted significantly with the prevailing avant-garde art of the time.
(Above photo - Classic art deco desk )
In the 1920s, the world was going through a period of the industrial revolution. The “lost generation” had just come of age after WWI. They sought to derive more from their lives. Craving life’s best possible offerings, this generation wanted more glamour. Amidst two of the most significant world conflicts, the art deco movement emerged.
It was in a 1925 exhibition in Paris that a movement that had been brewing under the radar first emerged. There were exhibitors from all over the world, with over 16 million visitors attending the exhibition. Soon, the art deco movement spread all over the world.
At that time, there were movements of people all over the world. As wealthy Europeans traveled, they carried with them the artistry, magazines, and style of the new movement. People began to associate art deco with fun and progress. Thus, period art deco became the default style for furniture, art, and architecture.
Distinctive Characteristics of Period Art Deco
(Above photo - Classic period 1920s art deco desk )
The Art deco style was applied in many fields, including architecture, fine arts, and crafts. However, it still retained distinctive features no matter where it was used. The following is a summary of the distinctive features of the popular style.
1. Geometrical Shapes
(Above photo - Art deco nightstands )
Lines and geometrical shapes define art deco. Mostly, designers used symmetrical, rectilinear shapes. Besides, decorations and embellishments were mainly consisting of natural shapes. It is not uncommon to find furniture and buildings with the shape of animals, flowers, shells, and the sunburst sunrise.
At a time when machines were taking over several sectors of the economy, designers often included industrial elements. Also, there was a growing influence of African design, Azteca art, Egyptian patterns as well as influences from Greece and Rome.
2. Bold Colors
(Above photo - Art deco cabinet )
Whether it was in architecture, carpentry, and fine art, designers used bold colors. In essence, they sought to bring out the vibrancy of the Period art deco style. Examples of the most popular colors included orange, purple, yellow, and red. Also, people would decorate their homes with mirrors or items embellished in gold or silver.
(Above photo - Art deco double bass chest of drawers )
The material mainly used depending on the application. Furniture makers used exotic woods such as mahogany and ebony, while architects employed revolutionary materials. It wasn’t uncommon to find stucco plastering, marble cladding, and bold windows. Inside the houses, there were mirrors for decorative purposes. Exotic woods were used to provide lacquer finishes. Also, the popularity of floors with geometric patterns grew at that time.
The art deco furniture continues to fascinate and influence designers today. That because it was a precursor to the post-modern movement.
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