I’m a very visual person. I used to work as a graphic artist. I love watching movies that are visually rich. I love wandering through the art gallery. I leave feeling like I’m floating on air.
One of my favourite styles is Art Nouveau.
Everyone would be familiar with the work of Alphonse Mucha. He shaped the look of the period. My DH bought me a book on Mucha and his work for Christmas one year and I devoured it in a day, then dreamed in Mucha stylisation for a week. Poor Mucha, they told him not to bother with art school because he would never amount to much!
What you might not be aware of the beautiful jewelry of the period.
And furniture …
And there is the architecture, both internal and external. Think Gaudi, among others.
Now wonder when the set designers were looking for inspiration for Rivendell, they looked to Art Nouveau.
I’ve spent way too long putting this post together. I got lost wandering through a feast of Art Nouveau images. The sad things is that I can’t use this for resonance in my writing because if I use the term art nouveau it will throw the reader out of the secondary world of the book and if I say the flowing/sensuous organic lines of the building/jewelery it doesn’t really convey the power of the art nouveau period.
Hope you’ve enjoyed this dip into Art Nouveau as much as I have.
It’s interesting what inspires writers. For Christmas last year my husband bought me this book on Art Deco houses. Did you know that there is a whole town in NZ filled with Art Deco houses? The town was flattened by an earth and rebuilt in this style. I do love the Art Deco. You don’t seem much of it where I live in Brisbane, Australia. There are more buildings in Melbourne. Lots of blocks of flats.And you can get modern homes built in the Art Deco style.
I’m torn between Art Deco and Art Nouveau. Anyone else love these two styles?
My friend Tansy’s new series, Creature Court, has a strong Art Deco flavour because much of the clothing is reminiscent of the twenties. We joked when we read the manuscript at a ROR that she should start a line of Creature Court clothes!
It’s funny what inspires us as writers. Tansy did her PHD on Rome and spent time there researching. Her book is an eclectic mix of Rome and the 1920s.
I have a novella set in the near future where the fashion is retro Art Deco. The settings and the clothes are beautiful as I visualise them, but I don’t think the average reader would get all the references unless they googled the things I mentioned. This is where a movie art director can create resonance for the film with sets and clothing. Think of the look of Blade Runner!
Much harder for us writers. We can mention music, but we can’t play it unless the reader has already heard it. We can mention a certain type of building or clothing, but again, the reader must know what we’re talking about. Yet, we still set out to create resonance in what we write by layering images, scents and music into the narrative. Because ultimately, its the story that’s important. Everything else is window dressing.