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Table of Dates & Historical Periods -
as a reaction to what many regarded as a growing philistinism in Victorian
England, this movement developed in the 1870's and 1880's, emphasizing high art
and refined tastes
a movement that flourished in Europe and the USA, the Arts and Crafts Movement
was characterized most by its reaction against industrialism and
mass-production; it began in the mid-19th century and carried on well
into the 20th. Participants in the movement sought to revive old
techniques and to emphasize artisanship and high-quality materials.
eclectic artistic and design style that began in Paris in the 1920 and
flourished internationally throughout the 1930s and into the World War II era.
The style influenced all areas of design, including architecture and interior
design, industrial design, fashion and jewellery, as well as painting, graphic
arts and film
influenced by the Arts and Crafts Movement, this movement, the name of which
means "new art," began in the late-19th century and carried on into
the early 20th century, emphasizing senuous shapes and organic forms.
The movement took root in Europe and the USA; in Scotland, a version of it
became known as the "Glasgow Style" or "Glasgow School."
lasting from 1815 to 1848 in Germanic countries, the bourgeois style of this
period became the German version of the French Empire Style, which began in
France with Napoleon's desire to revive the grandeur of ancient Rome. The
Biedermeier style adapted many of the neo-classical aspects of the Empire style,
including moulding, columns and other neo-classical designs. Biedermeier
furniture was also influenced by English Sheraton furniture. The principle
concern of Biedermeier design was comfort, convenience, and practicality, which
extended to affordability. Thus furniture from this time period tended to
feature more curves and upholstery and, although decorated with an assortment of
inlays and carvings, was absent of excess or significant embellishments.
named for the English cabinetmaker, Thomas Chippendale, who wrote The
Gentleman and Cabinet-maker's Director (1754), which was widely read and
imitated. Chippendale chairs tend to have carved, pierced backs and sinuous
arms. Other furniture pieces tend to feature decorative arches, fluting and
a trend in the Victorian Period to adapt older styles (as the Gothic, Tudor and
Jacobean styles) to contemporary needs and tastes.
a style that began with Napoleon's wish to revive the grandeur of ancient Rome,
the Empire Style spread to the international sphere, manifesting in Germanic
countries as the Biedermeir Style, in England as the Regency Style, and in
America (via England) as the Federal Style. The Empire Style represented the
height of neo-classical furniture and interior design, with anthropologically
correct models that reflected designs from ancient Greece and Rome.
Interestingly, at one point in time the Empire Style was so influential in
France that many citizens wore togas.
named for the first four King Georges, the Georgian Period lasted from 1714 to
1820. English furniture of the time was typically simple but not plain, with
adornment but not extravagance or embellishment. The principle design of the
period tended to rely on neo-classical models. The Georgian Period also includes
the Sheraton and Regency Styles. Influential designers of the time include
George Hepplewhite (b?-1786) and Thomas Sheraton (1751-1806).
some time in the 18th century, George Hepplewhite died in 1786. A
household name in England during his time, Hepplewhite's widow, Alice, published
his Cabinet-maker and Upholsterer's Guide in 1788, two years after his
death. The first major design guide published since Chippendale's Director,
Hepplewhite's Guide was extremely influential for cabinetmakers,
upholsterers and customers alike for years thereafter. His Guide reflects
a version of Robert Adam's style that was popular in the 1780's and typically
features inlays and painting rather than carvings, a trend that was highly
characteristic of Georgian Period furniture. Interestingly, no existing piece of
Hepplewhite's furniture has been identified.
for Queen Anne's regency (1702-1714), the Queen Anne period saw many
innovations, inlcuding the development of the cabriole leg and the introduction
of mahogany to English cabinetmakers.
for the "regency" of King George IV (1811-1820), the Regency Period took place
during the Georgian Period between 1800 and 1830. Representing the height of
English neo-classicism, the Regency Style was actually the English adaptation of
the Empire Style, which began with Napoleon and his spirations to the grandeur
of Rome. The Regency Style grew so popular in America that an adaptation of it
developed across the Atlantic, eventually becoming the Federal Style.
decorative style of the early to mid-18th century, principally in
France, southern Germany and Austria. Rococo Style was characterized by
naturalism and watery forms (e.g. the serpentine shape, lush floral carvings).
Thomas Chippendale adapted some Rococo designs to his own style.
Sheraton, Thomas: a
highly influential designer of the 19th century, Thomas Sheraton was
born in 1751 and died in 1806. Sheraton published several influential works,
including The Cabinet-maker and Upholsterer's Drawing-book (1791-3),
The Cabinet Dictionary (1803), and The Cabinet-maker, Upholsterer, and
General Artist's Encyclopaedia (1804). Sheraton's highly stylized designs,
which often featured innovative, multi-purpose furniture pieces, included
square-backed chairs with reeded legs, Grecian couches, and the chair leg that
curves forwards, known as the "sabre" leg. Sheraton's designs included several
of the Regency Style
named for the reign of Queen Victorian (1837-1901). Furniture of this period
tended to feature a mix of older styles and was characterized by revivalism.
Important movements included the Arts and Crafts Movement, the Art Nouveau
Movement and Eclectic Revivalism