Art Nouveau - modern, popular, fashionable - a style that appeared in the art of the late 19th century, at a time when the art world yearned for innovations, and artists, architects and sculptors tried to rethink antiquity, Gothic, Baroque, combining them and trying to find these combinations something new.
The distinctive features of the sculpture of the modern era are a return to natural lines, fluidity and dynamism of forms, internal energy. Art Nouveau sculpture is decorative, it is designed to decorate space, to subordinate it to a single rhythm, to harmonize with industrial society, at the same time, to force a person to plunge into thoughts, to awaken imagination.
Among the sculptors of Art Nouveau, the dominant place is occupied by two French masters: Auguste Rodin and Aristide Mayol.
Rodin left dozens of masterpieces known to almost everyone. His most famous, simply textbook work is The Thinker. The Thinker was originally the dominant of one of the most complex works of the master of the Gates of Hell. The triumph of the mind, the great ability to think, is sung by the sculptor with this work. Freedom and choice - these two gifts of God make a person’s life complex, confusing, but also beautiful at the same time.
Rodin's sculptures awaken imagination; his works are attracted by the author’s desire to capture life itself, moving, changeable, emotionally rich. His lyrical sculptures - The First Kiss, Eternal Spring, Romeo and Juliet, Poet and Muse - are filled with cheerfulness, harmony and positive energy. The master glorifies the great power of love, its beauty and immortality.
Mayol took up sculpture, being already a well-known and even illustrious master of painting. A new occupation captured him entirely. Experimenting with naked female nature, he tried by all possible means to create images of natural beauty, emphasized the natural harmony of the female body, sensuality and emotionality. His works - Pomona, At Night, River, Three Nymphs - adorn the best museums in the world, and all his work rightfully belongs to the masterpieces of European plastic art.
An interesting vision of the world and the interpretation of man are characteristic of the work of the Czech modernist - Frantisek Bilek. The master was able to fill his work with poetry, while outwardly preserving the full realism and reliability of the image. His deep and philosophically complex characters - Moses, Comenius, Jan Hus - not only delight in the novelty and non-standard interpretation, but also make you feel the character of the heroes.
Naum Aronson is not a very famous name today. However, the works of this master, who worked with Rodin for a long time, adorn many museums and galleries in the world. His sculptural portraits of Komissarzhevskaya, Beethoven, Tolstoy, Pasteur are brilliant examples of Art Nouveau in sculpture. All the master’s works are deep and dramatic. Each of them is a revelation. Nahum Aronson became the only artist who created a sculptural portrait of Grigory Rasputin, which is now stored in one of the museums in Israel.