We wish you all a happy 2014.
During a coffee break we were talking about how we will be seen in a hundred years’ time. Will the people of 2114 look at us and think “… hmmm Britain’s got talent, Great British Bake-off, twerking, tweeting, trolling, drones…? What was all that about?”
Or will they be rubbing their chins, impressed by the years’ innovations: wearable computers, developments in biometrics, 3D-printed organs, crowd sourced business. Or maybe 2014 sees the return of abstract art, but made by women artists, or the rise of digital surrealism, or the rise of the comic, or the beginning of a return to connoisseurship and the appreciation of the individually crafted. Who knows? We don’t, but with the centenary commemoration of the First World War about to dominate the press and media, belatrova wanted to see what was happening culturally back then, we wanted to see what the “future” was like one hundred years ago.
Gaudi’s art nouveau Casa Mila in Barcelona is finished (see blog June 2013), Die Brucke and German Expressionism comes to the fore, Art Deco in France starts to emerge, Picasso develops Cubism, Grand Central Station in New York opens to the public, the Vorticist movement takes shape in Britain, and airships (or Zeppelins) were new.
And one hundred years ago the Arts and Crafts Movement was flourishing, and had been since 1880, inspired by John Ruskin and William Morris. It emerged in Britain but was quickly taken up and adapted in America and Europe.
They promoted a revival of traditional handicrafts and the introduction of better design in everyday and domestic objects. Individuals in small workshops to large manufacturers created the work.
belatrova has a gut feeling that the era of the individually hand-crafted is coming around once again.
Here is one of our recent Manhattan slab pots, with just a hint of Kasimir Malevich about it, though strictly speaking the Russian founder of Suprematist painting did not start the movement until 1915.