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What Is Art Deco? A Peek Into 1920’s Style

Take a step back into time! Here’s the 1920’s Art Deco style, explained.

Art Deco, also known as Arts Décoratifs, was a movement that took the Roaring ‘20s by storm. When you imagine the world of Jay Gatsby (and all the lavish parties he threw), that’s Art Deco. It’s glitz, glamour, jewel tones, lush velvets and fabrics, and a little bit of geometric patterns thrown in. It’s gold accents, sculptural silhouettes and sweeping art. Finally, Art Deco is big and bold – if you’re looking for something quiet and reserved, you can look elsewhere!

1. Art Deco Is a Reflection of the Times

Art Deco is defined as the decorating style of 1920s that originated in France. During that time, France was globally influential in design, art, cinema, and more. When the first World War ended, the collective consciousness held high anticipation and confidence for the future. Frivolity was in the air, the burdens of finances lessened, and morale was at an all-time high. The effects of this hubris were felt across all mediums – fashion and decor most prominently.

2. The Difference Between Art Deco and Bauhaus

Art Deco and Bauhaus are often confused for each other and understandably so, as both contain similar elements. The main differences between the two lie in their messages: Art Deco revolves itself around optimism and industrial design, while Bauhaus focuses more on nature and classical elements.

3. The Variations of Art Deco Medium

While the Art Deco iconography is most associated with decor, its influences are also seen in other mediums. In architecture, the Art Deco style relies heavily on industrial elements; materials like concrete, steel and stucco aren’t just used in the construction – they’re also showcased as the ‘main act.’

Whether in decor, architecture, art or even fashion, elements of Art Deco are universal: geometric motifs, extravagant ornamentation, and bold silhouettes. In a word, it can be summed up as avant-garde. It pushed the limits, both geometrically-speaking and metaphorically-speaking, of what was accepted aesthetically at the start of the Jazz Age. After all, Art Deco wasn’t just about glamorous colors and fun patterns. It was a lifestyle, a rosy view of the world that gave every man and woman permission to be the kings and queens of their own worlds, to celebrate life in the ‘here-and-now’ – starting with their living room decor.

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Editorial Disclaimer: Articles featuring tips and advice are intended for educational purposes and only as general recommendations. Always practice personal discretion when using and caring for furniture, decor and related items.