This year autumn seemed to hold off for several weeks later than usual. This weekend it got cold and so I find myself bundling up and drinking lots of tea.
For some reason I tend to think of Alphonse Mucha as a cold weather artist. He was from what is now the Czech Republic and I think of Prague in the winter as well.
His work is so intricate and detailed, it takes a while to take it all in, so maybe the slower pace of the winter seems to suit his style.
He could draw like a thousand angles. I once saw a film of him drawing – the speed and accuracy of his line was astounding.
He pretty much invented and popularized the Art Nouveau style in Paris in the 20s. He started his career painting theatrical scenery, and got his big break in Paris by painting a poster for a Sarah Bernhardt play. As a theater kid, I feel a bit of kinship with his story.
He painted many advertisements and posters, but his master work was his Slav Epic. It is 20 enormous canvases celebrating Slavic history. Each one is at least one story, most depict several story lines.
Mucha is one of my favorite artists. Although I have visited Prague several times (my parents even lived there for a couple of years) I never got to see the Slav Epic, which was displayed in a small town in the Czech countryside. It has since been moved, so it is a little easier to see. However, it is still on my “someday” list.
Browsing through his paintings I am struck by his mastery and the beauty that he found in the world. He even makes the cold look lovely.
Have a cozy Tuesday,
Sarah from Design Flourishes
All images from the Mucha Foundation website and
Mucha’s Wikipedia gallery