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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Art Deco - beautiful furniture from the Roaring Twenties


Art Deco furniture and interiors
A board of furniture characteristic for Art Deco I created - click to enlarge


I really like ancient furniture. And if one is allowed to appreciate one style more than another - because there were talented artists and beautiful pieces of art in all of the the historical periods - one of my favourite is Art Deco. I love the geometric, simple shapes of the Art Deco furniture, its glossy exotic woods, fantastic mosaic floors (that are waiting for their own post here on my blog).


The period itself - the twenties and thirties of XXth century - is also fascinating. Poland was a young, reborn after 123 years of country, with the first generation of free Poles, full of energy, unconcious of yet another terrible war to come. In Europe and the United Stated it was a golden time for the art, the artists were very active members of the society, had big influence. People, tired of the IWW wanted to relax and have fun. A lot of fun, just like in The Great Gatsby. After all, there must have been the reason the period is being callled the Roaring Twenties :-)

Art Deco is a movement in decorative arts and architecture,  popular in the 1920s and 1930s. Art Deco doesn't really have its own aesthetic - its an eclectic style, combining influences of Art Nouveau, Cubism, Futurism, Modernism, Neo-Classicism and Bauhaus (source: www.art-deco-style.com). Artists were fascinated with the modern city, skyscraper became an American symbol of modernity and its form was often used for furniture (look at Paul T. Frankl's bookcase below) as well as "zgigzags", symbolising electricity.


Art Deco furniture and interiors
Art Deco interior. Donald Deskey, Radio City Music Hall

Ocean liners, the only mean of transportation across the continents between the wars, are where we can often see pure Art Deco interiors (ex. Normandie). In Poland there were liners "Batory" (photo below) and "Piłsudski" (its interiors here)

Art Deco furniture and interiors
Polish ocean liner "Batory"'s interior


If you love old furniture and want to know what you buy - here are the most important features of Art Deco furniture:

Characteristic features: clean, minimal design, curvy shapes, pure geometric forms, stepped forms (from skyscrapers), zigzags (electricity), coloristically contrasting materials, African and Indian motives, no sculpted decoration

Materials: exotic woods, ebony, mahogany, chestnut, zebra wood, metal finishes, black glass, mirrors, inclays of ivory and leather


The most famous furniture from Art Deco period:

1) Paul T. Frankl, 1928, Skyscraper bookcase

skyscraper Art Deco furniture


2) Eileen Gray, "Dragos" armchair - sold in 2009 for $28,341,909 !!

Art Deco furniture and interiors
3) Michel Roux-Spitz, 1930

Art Deco furniture and interiors

4) Couch in the shape of a mouth - the famous "Mae West Sofa Lips", Salvador Dali, 1937

Art Deco furniture and interiors



Other interesting Art Deco pieces found on the internet:

Art Deco furniture and interiors

Art Deco furniture and interiors
www.starychmebliczar.pl


Art Deco furniture and interiors

With mirrors

Art Deco furniture and interiors

Art Deco furniture and interiors


A charming piece I found on an auction (for less thank 100$)

Art Deco furniture and interiors


 And at the end - Art Deco furniture in a contemporary interior

Art Deco furniture and modern interior

Art Deco furniture and modern interior


I hope that this text helps you recognize Art Deco furniture immiediately :-)


sources: tablica.pl, britannica.com, John Pile - A History of Interior Design, pinterest.com, starychmebliczar.pl, www.metmuseum.org

post signature Kasia Antonczyk

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