Feature Gems & Gemology,Winter 1986, Vol. 22, No. 4

Art Nouveau: Jewels and Jewelers

The Art Nouveau movement, with its startling concepts in design, swept through Europe and the United States in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The asymmetrical whiplash line which typifies Art Nouveau was manifested in art, architecture, metalwork, textiles, and interior design. Perhaps its most concentrated and refined expression can be seen in the spectacular Art Nouveau jewels, which incorporated more unusual gems and gem materials such as moonstones, horn, ivory, opal, turquoise, and tourmalines into a host of fanciful designs. This article discusses the origins of Art Nouveau and outlines the distinctive interpretations and contributions made by significant Art Nouveau jewelers.