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1910's The Exotic Peasant Art Cubism Art Deco Classicism Streamlining Sportswear Accessories
Making Dress Modern: Fashion and Art in the Teens

The close relationship between art and fashion that was much publicized in the 1920's and 30's was already in evidence by 1910, as Paris became the focal point of an artistic revolution. Couturiers like Paul Poiret took an active part, as elements of the British Arts and Crafts style and the Continental Art Nouveau began to merge with the geometric forms, bright palettes, and "folk" or exotic motifs of avant-garde movements in Germany, Austria, and France.

Cubists such as Picasso, and the fauvist painters Matisse and Dufy, who were likened to "wild beasts" by critics for their unrestrained use of vivid color, exerted a strong influence, as did artists of the Vienna Workshops. In 1909, the Ballets Russes came to Paris with their extravagantly colored and exotically patterned costumes and sets, and the trickle of modernist ideas became a flood. Poiret in particular responded with a new boldness, soon becoming famous for his "orientalist" fashions.

Inspired by the modernist élan, the weaving firms of Lyon sought out painters and graphic artists to design their fabrics. Couturiers and artists, both traditional and avant-garde, formed friendships and were influenced by each other's work. At the same time, artists looked back to the French Empire, which inspired a new, loosely fitted, tubular silhouette that replaced the heavily corseted S-shapes of late 19th-century fashions.



Border Length
Skirt panel Lace panel
Border Length
  Silk Dress
  Embroidered dress


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