Art deco interior design
Art Deco is an eclectic artistic and design style that began in Paris in the 1920s and flourished internationally throughout the 1930s, into the World War II era. The style influenced all areas of design, including architecture and interior design, industrial design, fashion and jewelry, as well as the visual arts such as painting, graphic arts and film. The term “art deco” was first used widely in 1966, after an exhibition in Paris, ‘Les Années 25′ sub-titled Art Deco, celebrating the 1925 Exposition Internationale des Arts Décoratifs et Industriels Modernes that was the culmination of style moderne in Paris. At its best, Art Deco represented elegance, glamour, functionality and modernity.
Art Deco’s linear symmetry was a distinct departure from the flowing asymmetrical organic curves of its predecessor style Art Nouveau; it embraced influences from many different styles of the early 20th century, including Neoclassical, Constructivism, Cubism, Modernism and Futurism and drew inspiration from ancient Egyptian and Aztec forms. Although many design movements have political or philosophical beginnings or intentions, Art Deco was purely decorative.
Art Deco experienced a decline in popularity during the late 1930s and early 1940s, but had a resurgence during the 1960s with the first book on the subject by Bevis Hillier in 1968 and later an exhibition organised by him in Minneapolis in 1971.It continued with the popularization of graphic design during the 1980s. Art Deco had a profound influence on many later artistic styles, such as Memphis and Pop art.
Architectural examples survive in many different locations worldwide, in countries as diverse as China (Shanghai), the UK, Latvia, Spain, Cuba, Mexico, Indonesia, the Philippines, Argentina, Poland, Austria, Germany, Russia, Romania, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, India, Brazil, Colombia and the United States. In New York, the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building and Rockefeller Center are among the largest and best-known examples of the style. Riga, Latvia has the largest collection of Art Deco buildings in Europe.
Art Deco furniture is streamlined in design. It is modern and sleek but comfortable. Many designs of furniture are made with a flat bent chrome base that gives the piece a rocking effect. Wood pieces are highly lacquered in black. Decorative black lacquered panels are used as room screens. Highly lacquered wood frames are upholstered in lustrous white leather. A stepped-up arm is typical. Woods used include exotic Brazilian rosewood, ebony, birds-eye maple, and light maple veneers. Upholstery is typically of velour, giving the stark form comfort and a sensuous hand.
Colors for Art Deco Interiors
Because Art Deco interiors are minimalist, colors are used sparingly. Most color schemes include black, combining green and black, red and black and white and black. Accents are of chrome and gold. Pale blue or dove grey provides a softening effect.
Flooring for Art Deco Rooms
Classic white or black marble flooring is typical in an Art Deco interior. Checkered tiles of black and white squares are common. Rugs are placed over the sleek flooring, commonly brown, black or dove gray with serpentine swirls or period geometric flowers adding design.
Art Deco Lighting
Lighting in Art Deco interiors include ceiling lights, floor lamps, table lamps and wall sconces. Most styles are streamlined in design. Bronze and glass are used extensively incorporating flowers and geometric shapes in the design. Floor lamps include tall torchieres in wrought iron or chrome with hand blown glass shades. Some are also of black wrought iron. Table lamps of bright nickel with white, clear, frosted, or colorful glass shades are common. Wall sconces can be bronze, aluminum, steel, or silver plated base metal with opaque white or colorful glass shades.
Textures in Art Deco Interiors
Most surfaces are sleek and clean, lacking texture. Velour is used extensively in upholstered furniture and leather gives a simple sleek look on surfaces. Wood veneers add depth to wood pieces and add design to otherwise plain pieces.
Accessories Accent Art Deco Design
Form is important in Art Deco interiors. Mirrors made of nickel, chrome, or silver are decorated with motifs of deer, peacocks, roses, and geometric shapes. Bronze sculptures are sleek covered with colored or pearl beads. Desk sets of pen and pencil on a base are streamlined in design. Door handles and candlesticks molded of nickel, chrome, or silver have woodsy or chevron shapes. Frosted glass or black and white marble are used for vases. Inlay is common and adds color and design. Cameo glass vases show under layers of color exposed by etching away top layers of white or clear glass.
Art Deco style was modern for its time and many elements of the style carry over to design elements of later eras.
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