Art Nouveau: The French Aesthetic

Art Nouveau was a creative whirlwind that blew through the cobwebs of French historicism in the decorative arts, transforming the look of the final decades of the nineteenth century, and bringing a fresh, new, bright approach to creativity. Based on Nature, as seen through the sophisticated form of Japonism, it proclaimed a cult of beauty based on the feminine imperative, which contained within itself all that was good and all that was wicked. This volume, by one of the world's leading experts, traces that road, cuts down the undergrowth of misunderstanding, and examines aspects of the style in a witty, entertaining and informative narrative complemented by a comprehensive set of detailed biographies and lavish colour illustrations of the most striking creations of Art Nouveau.