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Liberty style


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The Art Nouveau style named after the department store Liberty, founded by Arthur Lazenby Liberty (1843–1917) in 1875 in Regent Street, London. The name Liberty became synonymous with advanced design and influenced the spread of the Art Nouveau style throughout Europe. A successful trader and entrepreneur, Liberty began by importing Persian, Chinese, Indian, and Japanese artefacts to fill up his store. By the end of the 1870s he started to commission work from leading Arts and Crafts designers, including textiles and fabrics from C. F. A. Voysey, eventually stocking a wide range of metalwork, glass, jewellery, furniture, and clothing, by designers such as Christopher Dresser, E. W. Godwin, and C. R. Ashbee. From 1894, Liberty produced its own range of Art Nouveau-style silver, named ‘Cymric’, and from 1903, pewter, named ‘Tudric’, decorated with Celtic-style ornament and adorned with panels of enamel. Liberty opened a shop in Paris in 1889 which helped to disseminate the Art Nouveau style throughout Europe. In Italy, the style became known as Stile Liberty. The store is still in existence today, in its original Regent Street location.

Subjects: Art.


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