Alphonse Mucha, The Top 100 Master Artist you should know:
Alphonse Mucha inspire more than just art throughout our generation.
Mucha is one of my personal most favorite on the master list. I adore his work and often get lost stare into the work of art he creates. I thought I would bring this topic of inspiring artist back up since I use to do it almost every week. Hopefully it will inspire us all.
Alphonse (Alfons) Mucha (1860 - 1939)
The man who DEFINES "Art Nouveau"
Alphonse Mucha was born in the town of Ivančice, Moravia. His singing abilities allowed him to continue his education through high school in the Moravian capital of Brno, even though drawing had been his first love since childhood. He worked at decorative painting jobs in Moravia, mostly painting theatrical scenery, then in 1879 moved to Vienna to work for a leading Viennese theatrical design company, while informally furthering his artistic education. When a fire destroyed his employer's business in 1881 he returned to Moravia, doing freelance decorative and portrait painting. Count Karl Khuen of Mikulov hired Mucha to decorate Hrušovany Emmahof Castle with murals, and was impressed enough that he agreed to sponsor Mucha's formal training at the Munich Academy of Fine Arts.
Having had his application to study at the Prague Academy of Arts rejected, the Czech born Mucha journeyed to Vienna, where he attended an evening class in drawing, and later to Munich, where between 1885 - 87 he studied at the Academy of Fine Arts. He moved to Paris in the late 1880s. When in 1890 he held his first one man show in Paris he was able to display well over 400 works. Though for a while in Paris he shared studio with another of our favourite painters, Paul Gauguine, it soon became obvious that Mucha’s art will develop differently to that of his older companion. While Paris was at the grip of Impressionism and the budding Expressionism, Mucha obviously always saw himself more as a designer rather than an innovative artist. That is not to say that he was not original. His originality lies in the way he was able to marry the ornamental design with the figurative painting, creating something that in his time was referred to as “Le Style Mucha”, before it became known as Art Nouveau (Mucha himself did not like the term, insisting that art was eternal and therefore could not be new).
There is something else that lies underneath Alphonse Mucha’s art. Not looking much for inspiration in the works of his contemporaries, nevertheless he could not escape the influence of the occult revival that had hit Paris just before his arrival. It was to inspire not only the visual artists of his and the next generation, but perhaps even more so the people in other fields of art, such as musical composers, architects, etc. Almost everything in Mucha’s art is about cycles, which to him are closely associated with the evolution of the human spirit.
In 1900, when the World Fair was held in Paris, Mucha received the prestigious commission to decorate the Austrian pavilion. Mucha stayed in Paris till 1906, when he went for several years to America, where he taught art at New York and Chicago. After 1910 he lived more or less permanently in Prague, but frequently travelled to America.
Some of his sketches and drawings:
Recommended Book from Alphonse Mucha to enchant your drawing and sketches:
Drawings of Mucha
*Tons of great studies, sketches, and beautiful figure drawing.
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