Tag Archives: Auguste Rodin

Art Nouveau – the enticing style of a new century


The evolution of Art Nouveau


In 1893 Edmond Lachenal introduced a new range of matt glazes that became the hallmark of his mature style – mat email veloute ( matt velvet opaque glaze ). It was created by immersing a standard glossy glaze into a  a hydroflouric acid bath and stripping it back to a matt glaze. This was highly symbolic of the more formal classical styles being dissolved to usher in a new era. The colourful, soft textured, ethereal glazes were perfectly suited to the dreamy, organic appearances of the emerging Art Nouveau designs. The muted palette gained instant acceptance and the Musee des Art Decoartifs purchased a Lachenal ceramic piece with this glaze in 1894. Simultaneously in the 1890‘s Jean Carries, Auguste Delaherche and Ernest Chaplet were also experimenting with muted earth tones. Another innovation in Lachanel’s work were his forms became more sculptural and organic. So plants weren’t merely painted on the surface, but became integrated into the surface form itself. Critics praised this happy union of naturalistic forms, complimented by the matt glazes as robustly graceful.

Ibis vase Ernest Chaplet

Ibis Vase – Ernest Chaplet

( frenchporcelaine.com )

The botanical vases with an organic appearance had a resemblance to the Japanese carved stone arts. This was no mere coincidence as the French designers in the 1880’s and 1890’s, such as Emile Galle, had been forging new styles based on nature, which reflected their inspiration from the Japanese aethestic. Since 1854, Japan had opened up its trade with the rest of the world and Japanese art flooded into the European markets. The subtle beauty and refinement of their paintings and ceramics had an immediate influence on the artists of Europe. Edmond Lachenal also began casting and glazing the work of independent sculptors. This practice was already a major aspect of Émile Müller’s firm, Tuileries d’Ivry. Then the idea was taken over by artisan-al potteries such as that of Alexandre Bigot. The collaboration between sculptor and art potter had a special currency; the concept of a fusion of all the arts, both high and low, were frequently discussed. Lachenal produced ceramic sculptural pieces for Auguste Rodin (1895), Daillion ( 1895), Agnes de Frumerie (1896-1906), Ferdinand Faivre (1897), Luca Madrassi (1894) and Max Blondat (1904). His collaboration with the Swedish figural sculptor, Frumerie,  resulted in her applying her talents to decorative vases, which produced works consisting of maidens merged with oversized flowers, dejected Elves, dancing nymphs entwined in vines and leaves and other nature themes blended with figures of feminine mystique.


Art Nouveau Figural relief Vase – Edmond Lachenal  & Agnes de Frumerie

In the excellent BBC series “ The Allure of Art Nouveau “ ( see below ), the following story was related by Alfonso Mucha’s grandson – During the holiday season of December 1894, the struggling Czech artist/painter Alphonso Mucha, happened to be in a Paris print shop when the printer arrived with a request for an urgent poster promoting Sarah Bernhardt’s new play ” Gismonda “. As most of the Parisian artists were out of town on holidays, Mucha was in luck and received the commission. When the printer saw the result 2 weeks later, he was initially shocked by the style and muted colours that Mucha had produced. However Bernhardt loved the artwork immediately and gave Mucha an embrace, declaring ” you have just made me immortal “.


Alfonso Mucha Gismondo poster

After the introduction of the poster on the 1st of January in 1895,  this turned out to be quite a prophetic statement, as the poster was an overnight sensation and was continually souvenired off walls. It was also a pivotal moment, being one of the first examples of inexpensive art being mass produced for general consumption. Mucha produced a flurry of paintings, posters, advertisements and book illustrations, as well as designs for jewellery carpets, wallpaper, and theatre sets in what was termed initially the Mucha Style but became known as Art Nouveau (French for ‘new art’) The promotion and development of Art Nouveau was rapid in architecture, ceramics, advertising and design and flourished for around 15 years.  Aubrey Beardsley’s illustration’s in Britain, Hestor Guimard’s design of the Paris Metro, Mary McDonald/CharlesMcKintosh in Glasgow, the architecture of Victor Horta in Brussels along with Antoni Gaudí in Barcelona and the Jugendstil secessionist  movement in Vienna all drank from the same fountain of creative elixir and inspiration during this extraordinary time. Edmond Lachenal continued his adventurous Art Nouveau ceramics into the 20th century with flamboyant forms and rhythms in his designs. Technical artistry was a feature of Art Nouveau decorative arts.  Ancient and historical techniques were revived and new ones invented, creating radiant colours and iridescent vividness resulting in captivating glazes and forms.

1910 teal-and-purplre Bud vase

Teal and purple Art Nouveau vase with pewter trim detail – c.1910

Eugene Baudin

       Vase---Edmond Lachenal

Art Nouveau Vase – Edmond Lachenal, 1900

The Indianapolis Museum of Art


 French Art Nouveau porcelain vase designed by Ernest Bussière and produced by Keller & Guérin,

(  This vase was shown at the Exposition de l’Ecole de Nancy in Paris in 1903. )



French Art Nouveau Cameo Glass Vase by Emile Gallé

W.S.and S

W.S.and S vase

( Treadway Toomey )


Weller Ewer

Wilhelm Kralik Sohn vase

Wilhelm Kralik Sohn vase

( James D Julia Auctioneers )


Handled vessel – Mougin, Nancy France

Art-Nouveau-vase   Figural Art Nouveau Vase – 1920’s

Judy Ritchie carved gourd

Judy Ritchie carved gourd


Kimbar- flickr

Loetz vase art nouveau

Austrian Loetz vase art nouveau with gilt overlay


Emile Galle Vase – Talking Lily  1900

( Naturalistic Spoon )

Fine Loetz vase organic form

 Loetz vase organic Art Nouveau form

Clement Massier vase

Clement Massier iridescent glaze vase

bronze vase two faries

Patinated Jugendstil style bronze vase with two fairies

( 1900style.es )

german-art nouveau

German Jugendstil Art Nouveau vase – Berlin Museum

( Nouveau Voyages – Flikr )

Austrian Lustre ceramic bowl

Austrian Art Nouveau lustre ceramic bowl

American Art Nouveau Gilt Metal Mantel Clock

American Art Nouveau Gilt Metal Mantel Clock, New Haven Clock Company

Amphora art nouveau vase

Amphora art nouveau vase


Delphin Massier faience vase

Amphora Austria Art Nouveau

 Amphora Art Nouveau gilt handle quatrefoil foliate vase


Alvin Art Nouveau glass vase with sterling overlay

Amphora compote large form

Amphora compote large form

( Treadway Toomey )


AN glass vase with green stones

Antoine Bricteaux Étoile

Antoine Bricteaux Étoile

Art Nouveau Patinated Bronze Figural Vase

Art Nouveau Patinated Bronze Figural Vase

Art Nouveau Moscow

Art Nouveau facade – Moscow

Crown Plate Leslie Hindman

Crown Plate

( Leslie Hindman )

Art Nouveau brooch

Art Nouveau snake brooch


Daum vase


 Faience Vessel  – Ferner  Green with Gold Sponge Accents   – DF Haynes

( Timber Hills Antiques on Ruby Lane )


Loetz vase, glass with a pulled design in blue, applied metal overlay in Art Nouveau

Amphora vases

Two matching Amphora vases

Royal Doulton pitcher

Royal Doulton pitcher – 1900

( Treadway Toomey )


Osef Maria Auchentaller Jugendstil

Gustav Gurschner Table Lamp

Gustav Gurschner Nouveau Table Lamp


Loetz vase, tapered form with colorful iridescence and floral design in silver overlay

Mont Joye French Nouveau vase

Mont Joye French Nouveau cameo art glass vase

Olivier de Sorra Pierrefond

Olivier de Sorra – Pierrefond

Pitcher Lucien Hirtz-1900

Pitcher – Lucien Hirtz



Royal Dux vase, broad shape with two handles and a sculpted maiden among foliage.

( Treadway Toomey )

Rudolf-Hamršmíd Vase 1899

Rudolf Hamršmíd, Vase, 1899

Alfons Mucha 1896 poster

Alfons Mucha 1896 poster

French Art Nouveau-Aubergine Vase

French Art Nouveau  ” aubergine ” vase

 Keller and Guérin, following a design of Ernest Bussière, featuring iridescent gold, brown and green glazes.


An extract from the BBC ” The Allure Of Art Nouveau ”  series featuring some pieces from Rene Lalique :



Monumental Willets Belleek Art Nouveau vase

Monumental Willets Belleek Art Nouveau vase

Polished pewter card tray

Art Nouveau polished pewter card tray

Rindskopf Grenada Art Glass

Rindskopf Grenada Art Glass Vase

Art Nouveau Vase

Art Nouveau Vase

Art Nouveau

Amphora Art Nouveau Portrait Vase

( Colletti Gallery 1stdibs )

Bernhardt as Cleopatra

Sarah Bernhardt as Cleopatra

Acid Etched Art Nouveau Vase

Acid Etched Art Nouveau Vase

Austrian Art Nouveau vase

Austrian Art Nouveau vase

Art Nouveau Earthonfire Etsy

Art Nouveau

Earthonfire Etsy

Edmund Lachenal and Agnes de Frumerie vase1890

Edmund Lachenal and Agnes de Frumerie vase 1890



Exquisite ART NOUVEAU Vase by Camille Tharaud Limoges Lemovices

Art Nouveau Vase by Camille Tharaud Limoges Lemovices

( EstatelyAntiques – Etsy )

Art Nouveau Czech Bohemian

Art Nouveau Czech Bohemian Vase

Clement Massier Bat wing handled jardiniere

Clement Massier Grape Pattern “Bat Wing” Ceramic Jardiniere, c. 1889 – 1892

Amphora Art Nouveau grape decoration vase

 Amphora Art Nouveau gold and grape decoration vase