Art Nouveau is usually known as Jugendstil in Germany. The style was most popular in Europe, but its influence was global. Hence, it is known in various guises with frequent localised characteristics. Other local names were associated with the characteristics of its forms, its practitioners and their works, and schools of thought or study where it was popular. Many of these terms refer to the idea of “newness”. Before the term “Art Nouveau” became common in France. Although Art Nouveau acquired distinctly localised tendencies as its geographic spread increased, some general characteristics are indicative of the form. A description published in Pan magazine of Hermann Obrist’s wall hanging Cyclamen (1894) described it as “sudden violent curves generated by the crack of a whip”, which became well known during the early spread of Art Nouveau. Subsequently, not only did the work itself become better known as The Whiplash but the term “whiplash” is frequently applied to the characteristic curves employed by Art Nouveau artists. Such decorative “whiplash” motifs, formed by dynamic, undulating, and flowing lines in a syncopated rhythm and asymmetrical shape, are found throughout the architecture, painting, sculpture, and other forms of Art Nouveau design.
Our Art Nouveau & Art Deco Collections
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