Thursday, November 1, 2012

Art Nouveau Jewelry

The period of Art Nouveau was a colorful cultural movement in the arts that swept through Europe during it's transition from the 19th to the 20th century. This was one of the first departures from classical art and design toward Modernism. Art Nouveau jewelry is highly varied and asymmetrical which reflected the shifting political and social customs during that time.

Art Nouveau Yellow Gold Earrings and Turquoise Ring at Fourtane 

Characterized by graceful, soft undulating curves, ethereal, languid feminine forms and nature, Art Nouveau jewelry emotes romance and is infused with elements of whimsy and fantasy. 

Enamel Art Nouveau Pendant at Fourtane

Jewelers during this time drew inspiration from the natural world using flowers, birds, insects, serpents, twining plant tendrils and the female form.

Yellow Gold, Seed Pearl and Enamel Art Nouveau pin at Fourtane

Moonstones, pearls, opals, shells and semi-precious gemstones were prominent materials and plique-a-jour enameling techniques gave a transparent, colorful stained glass effect to Art Nouveau jewelry. Pioneers assocciated with the Art Nouveau movement were Louis Comfort Tiffany, a celebrated American glass maker, and Rene Lalique, who went on to contribute designs for Boucheron and Cartier.

 The Art Nouveau period was a pivotal development in jewelry's evolution and helped to pave the way for the advent of modern art and culture.
Pliqu-a-jour butterfly brooch at Fourtane

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