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Part of European Sculpture and Decorative Arts
Georges Hoentschel (French, Paris 1855–1915 Paris)
Date: 1899–1900Accession Number: 2007.27
Philip Webb (British, Oxford 1831–1915 West Sussex)
Date: 1861Accession Number: 26.54
Designed by Jean Brandely (French, active 1855–67)
Date: 1867Accession Number: 1989.197
Jean-Joseph Carriès (French, 1855–1894)
Date: ca. 1890–94Accession Number: 1998.28
Sèvres Manufactory (French, 1740–present)
Date: 1900–04Accession Number: 1988.287.2a, b
Attributed to Jean-Désiré Muller (French, 1877–1952)
Date: ca. 1900Accession Number: 2010.406a–c
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During this period artists working in different materials combined motifs inspired by the Middle Ages, the Renaissance, and the Rococo to create works that reflect the past but are unmistakably nineteenth century in origin. The end of the century witnessed the expanded role of the independent artist, who frequently supplied manufacturers with designs for a wide variety of objects. The Arts and Crafts movement, born in the 1860s in reaction to England's growing industrialization, celebrated the importance of the craftsman by advocating a return to traditional techniques and simpler forms of the past.
The Aesthetic Movement, which shared many of these values, emphasized beauty as the supreme goal of the decorative arts. The majority of its practitioners were strongly influenced by the clean lines and relative simplicity of Japanese art.
The allure of historical styles diminished toward the close of the century, when a new artistic movement favoring flowing, natural forms and stylized ornament emerged across Europe. This style—known as Art Nouveau in French and Jugendstil in German—dominated design well into the 1920s.
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