Unsatisfied with the industrial revolution, artists wanted to move away from the urban, mass-production style of work and create everyday artworks and works that a machine could not make. Starting in England, it spread through Europe, especially France, and then the United States. The French Art Nouveau “new art” was influenced by Rococo and Japanese Art. Stylistically, it had a decorative style which united different arts and crafts. Around the late 19th century, there was a huge poster revolution. There were life size posters using vibrant colors with women being the focal point. These same aspects were found within Alphonse Mucha’s works.
Alphonse Mucha was originally from Czechoslovakia but moved to Paris in 1887. He basically got lucky in his poster making career, because he knew an actress named Sara Bernhardt. In a very short time, she came across Mucha and asked him to create a poster for her which showcased his signature style of an elongated woman. This actress was known internationally because she traveled and performed all over, and because of this, more people were exposed to Mucha’s works.
Mucha’s posters had similar characteristics in each of his pieces. He used curvilinear lines throughout his work which is most prominent in the hair. A lot of his posters had some sort of a decorative frame, adorned with leaves and flowers which gave it a glamourous feel. The art would also take up almost all of the space, which was a typical characteristic of Art Nouveau. Overall, Mucha’s posters were very organic and showcased the idealized beauty of women and their sexuality.
I personally love Alphonse Mucha’s style of work. He is able to portray a women and her body in such an elegant manner by using soft curves and embellishing her in organic elements. A lot of his work have a gentle movement to them that seem almost sensual. My favorite piece from Mucha would be “Dance” because of the way he positions the figure and the lines around her to create an upward motion, making it seems as if she is floating.
Tuesday (M)art Blog- #3- Alphonse Mucha, Mart V/d Wiel, “Mart Vd Wiel, N.p. n.d. Web. 28 Sept. 2016.