A key figure in the promotion of Art Nouveau, German‐born Bing originally trained in ceramics before moving to Paris in 1871 following the end of the Franco‐Prussian War. After opening a shop he travelled to the Far East in 1875, before returning once more to Paris, where he opened another trading outlet, La Porte Chinoise, in which he sold oriental objets d'art. This became a focal point for those interested in Japanese art, Bing later going on to edit the periodical Le Japon artistique from 1888 to 1991. Louis Comfort Tiffany was a notable customer of Bing's, the latter becoming Tiffany's European distributor in 1889. In 1892 Bing travelled to the United States charged with a commission from the French government to report on the industrial arts in the United States. He visited the Chicago World's Columbian Exhibition in 1893, publishing his findings in 1895. Perhaps inspired by Tiffany, Bing took an increasing interest in contemporary design developments and opened a Parisian gallery and workshops called L'Art Nouveau in 1895, giving its name to the fashionable fin‐de‐siècle movement (see Art Nouveau) that swept through Europe and beyond. Designers shown by Bing included Beardsley, W. A. S. Benson, Crane, Gallé, Lalique, Morris, and van de Velde. Also of considerable significance was Bing's Pavilion at the Paris Exposition Universelle of 1900, where he commissioned interiors from Georges de Feure, Édouard Colonna, and Eugène Gaillard.
Subjects: Industrial and Commercial Art.