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Old November 8th, 2006, 03:20 AM   #1
gonzo
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What is Art-Deco?

I know the Chrysler building and Empire state are 'Art Deco'.....but what makes them Art Deco?

Is it the 'layered' and 'angular' architecture?...the fact that they 'taper' near the top?

Would this at all be considered Art Deco?...


...thanks.
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Old November 8th, 2006, 04:12 AM   #2
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Art Deco is a style from an era, very classy really it was all about excess in an where there was little money think depresion glass. You can have art deco furniture, movies, dolls the list goes on. Building wise it's harder to plug and i dont know a heap but id say alot of it drew from gothic influences and from there on it evolved, you could say into internationalist style structures.
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Old November 8th, 2006, 04:26 AM   #3
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That building you posted is far from being Art Déco.It's a Post-Modern building with some Art Déco resemblances,like the zigurat-shaped top,for example.
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Old November 8th, 2006, 11:36 AM   #4
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From wikipedia:

Art Deco was a popular design movement from 1910 until 1939, affecting the decorative arts such as architecture, interior design, and industrial design, as well as the visual arts such as fashion, painting, the graphic arts, and film. This movement was, in a sense, an amalgamation of many different styles and movements of the early 20th century, including Constructionism, Cubism, Modernism, Bauhaus, Art Nouveau, and Futurism. Its popularity apexed during the 1920s. Although many design movements have political or philosphical roots or intentions, Art Deco was purely decorative. At the time, this style was seen as elegant, functional, ultra modern.

[...]

It was widely considered to be an eclectic form of elegant and stylish modernism, being influenced by a variety of sources. Among them were the "primitive" arts of Africa, Egypt, or Aztec Mexico, as well as Machine Age or Streamline technology such as modern aviation, electric lighting, the radio, and the skyscraper. These design influences were expressed in fractionated, crystalline, faceted forms of decorative Cubism and Futurism, in Fauvism's palette. Other popular themes in art deco were trapezoidal, zigzagged, geometric and jumbled shapes, which can be seen in many early pieces.

Corresponding to these influences, Art Deco is characterized by use of materials such as aluminum, stainless steel, lacquer, inlaid wood, sharkskin (shagreen), and zebraskin. The bold use of stepped forms, and sweeping curves (unlike the sinuous, natural curves of the Art Nouveau), chevron patterns, and the sunburst motif are typical of Art Deco. Some of these motifs were ubiquitous — for example, sunburst motifs were used in such varied contexts as ladies' shoes, radiator grilles, the auditorium of the Radio City Music Hall, and the spire of the Chrysler Building.

Art Deco was an opulent style, and its lavishness is attributed to reaction to the forced austerity imposed by World War I. Its rich, festive character fitted it for "modern" contexts, including interiors of cinema theaters and ocean liners such as the Ile de France and Normandie.

A parallel movement called Streamline Moderne, or simply Streamline, followed close behind. Streamline was influenced by the modern aerodynamic designs emerging from advancing technologies in aviation, ballistics, and other fields requiring high velocity. The attractive shapes resulting from scientifically applied aerodynamic principles were enthusiastically adopted within Art Deco, applying streamlining techniques to other useful objects in everyday life, such as the automobile. Although the Chrysler Airflow design of 1933 was commercially unsuccessful, it provided the lead for more conservatively designed pseudo-streamlined vehicles. These 'streamlined' forms began to be used even for mundane and static objects such as pencil sharpeners and refrigerators.

The Art Deco style celebrates the Machine Age through explicit use man made materials (particularly glass and stainless steel), symmetry, repetition, modified by Asian influences such as the use of silks and Middle Eastern designs. It was strongly adopted in the United States during the Great Depression for its practicality and simplicity, while still portraying a reminder of better times and the 'American Dream'.

Hope that clears it up.
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Old November 9th, 2006, 02:36 AM   #5
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^Yes, thank you.

It seems to me though, since ART DECO encompasses so many different things, that two buildings could both be considered "ART DECO" yet have hardly nothing visually in common with each other..

Do you reckon this to be true?
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Old November 9th, 2006, 02:49 PM   #6
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I reckon they can, for example, this is art deco:

And this

Yet this is as well

and so is this


I don't think the bottom 2 have a lot in commen with the upper two.
Personally, I prefer the lower 2 though.

You should really check this topic on ssp, though a number of buildings aren't really art deco.
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Old November 10th, 2006, 02:30 AM   #7
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^thanks.
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Old November 12th, 2006, 01:44 AM   #8
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montevideo art deco
Quote:
Originally Posted by PARLANCHIN View Post
The romance of Montevideo with art déco began early, in half of the twenties, when the new style just began to project from Paris to the world. It germinated very well between us, better than the pure vanguards, that gave some significant works nothing else and. It multiplied his presence in the buildings of apartments of the Center, was by almost two decades the characteristic touch of distinction in the residences with modern pretension, delineated the profile of the police sentry boxes and the gasoline stations, decorated breweries and coffees, dance halls and cinemas. Art deco this present in all the corners of Montevideo and this considered one of the cities where greater influence ejercio that style.
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Old November 13th, 2006, 06:22 AM   #9
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All art deco buildings were either built with bricks, like the Chrysler Bldgs, or with concrete, like the ESB, but they usually had a styled roof.
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Old November 13th, 2006, 02:51 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TalB View Post
All art deco buildings were either built with bricks, like the Chrysler Bldgs, or with concrete, like the ESB, but they usually had a styled roof.
It wasn't limited to bricks and concrete, there are a number of examples of totally glass clad art deco buildings:

Manchester Daily Express building (1939)


London Daily Express building

Interior...
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Old November 13th, 2006, 04:48 PM   #11
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Amazing buildings!!!
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Old November 15th, 2006, 02:00 AM   #12
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Good point about the roofs, TalB, but the ESB's facade is actually brick faced with Indiana Limestone...

CrownSteler, your first 2 buildings are more streamline moderne, which tends to have a lot less ornament than "pure" Deco.

This also makes definitions a bit more complicated, because Moderne survived into the 50's or later, and served as a "launch pad" for a lot of science fiction architecture and set design, from Flash Gordon to the Jetsons...

And Citystyle, while some elements of Streamline Moderne might have survived in the International Style, I don't think Art Deco did. In fact, from what I've seen, the "pure" International or Modernist Style - glass with concrete or steel boxes, with flat roofs and absolutely no ornament - is probably about as far away from Art Deco as you can get - compare the Met Life or Seagram Buildings with the Chrysler Building...

I'm happy to note, BTW, that both Streamline Moderne and Deco elements are popping up again...
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Old November 15th, 2006, 05:14 PM   #13
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Some examples in Paris of different movements of the style "Art Déco"

Palais de Tokyo


Palais de Chaillot


Eglise Ste Odile


Eglise St Esprit


The department store "La Samaritaine"


Housing












Doors









http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=329442
http://www.paris1930.com/
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Old November 15th, 2006, 10:36 PM   #14
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Since both buildings of Worldwide Plaza, in NYC, are both made of bricks but they happen to be postwar, are they considered art deco?
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Old November 15th, 2006, 10:42 PM   #15
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The New Zealand city of Napier is an Art Deco City.

Napier was destroyed by an earthquake in the 1930's and rebuilt in the art deco style.
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Old November 15th, 2006, 10:49 PM   #16
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Buffalo's Art Deco City Hall


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Old November 15th, 2006, 10:53 PM   #17
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St Johns' Cathedral, Napier, NZ

An example of Art Deco church building.

This photo was taken by our Napier boy - Spotila - who keeps the Kiwi forum up to date with the fab city of Napier

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Old November 16th, 2006, 11:19 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Liz L View Post
CrownSteler, your first 2 buildings are more streamline moderne, which tends to have a lot less ornament than "pure" Deco.

This also makes definitions a bit more complicated, because Moderne survived into the 50's or later, and served as a "launch pad" for a lot of science fiction architecture and set design, from Flash Gordon to the Jetsons...
But are they still considered art deco? I believe everybody still keeps calling it art deco, but I never really got why they are art deco, and I always found them distinctly 50s looking

Quote:
Since both buildings of Worldwide Plaza, in NYC, are both made of bricks but they happen to be postwar, are they considered art deco?
No, they are post modern with art deco elements
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Old November 16th, 2006, 03:53 PM   #19
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Napier is a wonderful little city!
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Old November 16th, 2006, 04:18 PM   #20
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World Art Deco Congress - Cape Town



Opening reception of the 8th World Congress on Art Deco in the Mutual Life Assurance Building in Cape Town.
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