The Art Nouveau Tile Fireplace... Sinuous & Sensual!
Art Nouveau tile fireplace designs are very much in vogue again. Their sinuous, richly embossed patterns and vivid colors make for a very gratifying and visually intoxicating feast!
is an international style of art, architecture and design that peaked in popularity at the
beginning of the 20th century (1880-1914). It is characterized by highly-stylized, flowing, curvilinear designs
often in- corporating floral and other plant-inspired motifs . . . . .
exemplified in the two examples direct- ly below. Abandoning the eclectic revival styles of the Victorian era, Art Nouveau was an avant-garde move- ment that greatly influenced artists and designers of the time.
One such artist and designer was
(1860-1939). Though born in Morovia, the present day Czech Republic, he gained fame in 18- 90's Paris as an
illustrator and artist in the Art Nouveau style. His distinctive designs often featured beautiful young women in
flowing robes or gowns, fre- quently surrounded by lush flowers which sometimes formed haloes be- hind their heads.
Many of his remark- able illustrations have been adapted to make striking Art Nouveau tiles, such as the
coordinated set pictured at right.
The following two tile designs are also adaptations of Mucha's distinctive illustration style.
Another leading figure in the Art Nouveau Movement, particularly in the United Kingdom, was
Charles Rennie Mackintosh
(1868-1928), a Scottish architect and designer. Mackintosh's style was also very distinctive and consisted of strong right angles and contrasting floral-inspired decorative motifs with subtle curves, as exemplified in the four examples below.
Unlike many other styles of design, Art Nouveau was extremely broad based and encompassed an entire lifestyle. In addition to tile fireplace designs, the Art Nouveau Movement spawned a vast array of exciting new looks for buildings -- both inside and out -- as well as furniture, lighting fixtures, sil- verware, textiles, wallpaper, jewelry, posters, prints and book illustrations.
Unique and highly creative designs for fireplace mantels and accessories were also introduced. The stunning fireplace surround and overmantel at right, in- tricately decorated with a profusion of multi-colored pieces of marble, is a beautiful replica of an original 19th century Art Nouveau chimneypiece. Accented with graceful curves of hand-forged wrought iron to delicately "frame" the overall composition, it epitomizes the design philosophy and style of the Art Nouveau Movement.
Dynamic, undulating, and flowing, highly stylized organic forms characterize much of Art Nouveau design.
Many of the designs seem to spring to life and grow into plant-derived forms, as shown in the following
beautiful ex- amples -- all of which are ideal for tile fireplace applications.
to view and learn about moulded vs. tube-lined Art Nou- veau tiles.
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