Sunday, 21 April 2013

Alphonse Mucha - part 12


Portrait by A. Tasev Warszawa 1926
Alphonse (Alfons) Mucha (1860 – 1939) was a Czech painter and decorative artist born in 1860 born in the town of Ivančice, Moravia. He is best known for his luxurious poster and product designs, which encapsulate the Art Nouveau style. Contemporary interest in his work was revived in 1980 after an exhibition at the Grand Palais in Paris.

This is the final part of a 12-part post on the works of Alphonse Mucha. For biographical notes on Mucha see part 1. For earlier works see parts 1 - 11 also.

Alphonse Mucha and photography

Facts on Alphonse Mucha and photography from the Mucha Foundation  http://www.muchafoundation.org

Mucha began to take photographs in the early 1880s, probably in Vienna, with a borrowed camera. It was not until he had gained some recognition in Paris and sufficient funds that he purchased his first camera. Mucha’s photographic output grew dramatically after his move to a large studio in the rue du Val de Grâce in 1896. In the new studio, where he had considerably more light thanks to large windows and a glass ceiling, he photographed on a virtually daily basis.

Between 1896 and the early 1900s Mucha made a series of photographs of the models posing for him.  The use of photography as an inexpensive medium for preliminary studies was common among Mucha’s Parisian contemporaries. It was in his studio that that Mucha entertained countless Parisian artists, writers and musicians.  It was also the setting for one of the earliest cinematic projections given by the Lumière brothers, whom Mucha had met in 1895, and for psychic experiments with Camille Flammarion and Albert de Rochas.  In the background of the studies of models, examples of Mucha’s work may be seen, surrounded by his collection of objets d’art, books and furniture, many of which survive to this day. 

The majority of Mucha’s Parisian photographs were not taken for a specific project – he preferred to improvise a number of poses in front of the camera, creating an archive of variants from which he could select what he considered most suitable for the subject of each new commission.

1886c Karel Václav Mašek, Czech painter as a student at the Munich Academy of Art © Mucha Trust

c1892 Self-portrait in his studio, Rue de la Grande Chaumière, Paris © Mucha Trust

1893 Paul Gauguin © Mucha Trust

1893 Illustartion from 'Le Petit Français Illustré' employing the Paul Gauguin pose above © Alphonse Mucha Estate/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris

1893 Paul Gauguin © Mucha Trust

c1893-94  Paul Gauguin playing Mucha’s harmonium in his studio, Rue de la Grande Chaumière, Paris © Mucha Trust

c1893-94 Mucha, Gauguin, & friends at Rue de la Grande Chaumière, Paris © Mucha Trust

c1896 Berthe de Lalande, Mucha’s mistress, in Mucha’s studio, Rue du Val de Grâce, Paris © Mucha Trust

1897 Photographic study © Mucha Trust

1897 Photographic study © Mucha Trust

1900 Cover of 'La Medecine' employing the above photographic pose © Alphonse Mucha Estate/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris

c1897 Mucha's Studio, Mucha’s studio, Rue du Val de Grâce, Paris © Mucha Trust

c1898 Photographic study © Mucha Trust

c1898 Amilcare Cipriani, Italian revolutionary and socialist, in Mucha's studio, Rue du Val de Grâce, Paris © Mucha Trust

1899 Photographic study. Figure employed in the background of the illustration below © Mucha Trust

1899 'Menu de Pique-Nique' for the 'Almanach de Gourmands © Alphonse Mucha Estate/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris

c1899 Untitled Female Nude gelatin silver print 13.8 x 8.89 cm © SFMOMA Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris

1900 Photographic study © Mucha Trust

c1900 Mucha’s studio, Rue du Val de Grâce, Paris © Mucha Trust

c1900 Mucha’s studio, Rue du Val de Grâce, Paris © Mucha Trust

c1900 Mucha’s studio, Rue du Val de Grâce, Paris © Mucha Trust

c1900 Mucha’s studio, Rue du Val de Grâce, Paris © Mucha Trust

c1900 Mucha’s studio, Rue du Val de Grâce, Paris © Mucha Trust

c1901 Ballet study Rue du Val de Grâce, Paris © Mucha Trust

c1901 Mucha’s studio, Rue du Val de Grâce, Paris © Mucha Trust

c1902-03 Mucha’s studio, Rue du Val de Grâce, Paris © Mucha Trust

c 1903 Marie (Maruška) Chytilová, art student and Mucha’s future wife in his studio, Rue du Val de Grâce, Paris © Mucha Trust © Mucha Trust

1906 Photographic study for the illustration below © Mucha Trust

1906 'Everybody's Magazine'© Alphonse Mucha Estate/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris

1908 Study for a Decorative Panel gelatin silver print 12.4 x 9.9 cm © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study © Mucha Trust

Photographic study for the illustration below © Mucha Trust

Illustration from 'Les Chasseurs d'Épaves' © Alphonse Mucha Estate/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris




1 comment:

  1. Thanks for this beautiful serie! It was nice to see more of Mucha's background and work.

    ReplyDelete

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