The Art Deco style has maintained some level of popularity since its inception a Century ago, but this year it seems everybody has been talking about it. This may well be due to the jazz age coming back in a big way, along with popular brands such as Dunhill and HTC continuing to lean on Art Deco to inform their aesthetic.
As Art Deco is extremely close to our hearts, we thought we would dig into its history to tell you a little more about it.
The style of Art Deco takes its name from the Exposition Internationale des Arts Décoratifs et Industriels Modernes in 1925. However, the style actually appeared in France just before World War 1, and up until 1968 it was more commonly known as Style Moderne.
History of Art Deco
The style became popular during the 1920’s and 30’s, influencing the design of buildings, furniture, jewellery, fashion, cars, theatres, trains, ocean liners, everyday objects and of course art.
The style began its decline around 1940 and this then quickened at the start of World War 2.
Art Deco, as a style, is typified by its smooth clean lines, geometric shapes, elegant streamlined forms and the use of bright, and in some cases garish, colours.
At its core was the desire to be modern. As a style, it was considered to be something of a luxury, a cry out against the austerity that World War I had imposed.
The combination of modern styles, fine craftsmanship and costly material such as silver, crystal, ivory, jade and lacquer were a welcome change to the growing taste for a style that was elegant and glamorous whilst remaining functional.
Art Deco pieces, especially Art Deco sculptures, echo a decadence that was felt by people following the war.
The clean lines of many of the sculpted figures and the more open poses offer up a hint of the new found freedom that was experienced by so many, capturing the very essence of the vitality that was so prevalent during the period.
By the 1930’s, foreign travel had become all the rage. People had more money and they wanted more freedom. The increasing popularity of African safaris led to the rise of such things as animal skins, ivory and tortoiseshell appearing in homes, and, of course, Art Deco sculptures of wild animals.
With the discovery of Tutankhamen’s tomb, Egyptian symbols and iconography also began to appear in Art Deco works.
The Art Deco period produced many stunning sculptures, with lithe feminine forms, both clothed and nude, and animals being amongst the most popular subjects depicted.
Art Deco Sculptures
At our showrooms on Portobello Road in London, we have a fantastic array of Sculptures and glass that capture the true essence of the Art Deco movement. If you would like to begin or add to a collection of Art Deco sculpture or Art Deco glass we are always happy to discuss pieces with you.
We can also arrange viewings of our collection by appointment or alternatively, you can browse online.