Wednesday, October 19, 2022

Anton Seder: Major Designer of Art Nouveau

 Art Nouveau was very popular art form inspired by natural forms that began in 1890. It was the most popular from then until 1910.The style was represented by flattened and abstract objects with sinuous and flowing forms. 

A highly recognized artist, designer and art professor in this form was Anton Seder (1850-1916). He was born in Munich, Germany and trained as a painter, sculptor and architect. Later, he became the first director of the Ecole Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs, founded in 1890, in Strasbourg, Alsace. (now France)

Three years after becoming the director, Seder would submit the winning design for a new building to house the school. It is a beautiful campus and the building looks quite imposing. Here's a couple of photographs to try and capture his hand in Art Nouveau. (If you're a fan of this art form, you might enjoy visiting there on your travels.)

Besides Seder's teaching and his design for the school, he was also involved in gold and iron works for a church and wrote at least 10 books in 11 years! His books are still available and as recently as 2020 there was a calendar printed of his Art Nouveau designs.

Alas, post WW1, there was a shift in the "modern" style of art towards Art Deco. In many ways, it's the opposite of Art Nouveau with its geometric patterns and Asian influences. Seder would live long enough to be criticized as his work went out of style, but not long enough for him to evolve. He was such a brilliant man, one can only wonder what he might have done.



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