Cover Design of Wren’s City Churches by Arthur Heygate Mackmurdo

Cover Design of Wren’s City Churches by Arthur Heygate Mackmurdo

Title: Cover Design of Wren’s City Churches
Date: 1883
Media: Woodcut print on handmade paper
Movement: Art Nouveau

Mackmurdo’s woodcut is an example of the influence of English design, in particular the Arts and Crafts movement on Art Nouveau. Mackmurdo’s use of positive and negative space and the unique simplicity of the piece both contribute to this association. The whiplash curves and abstract-cum-naturalistic forms are characteristic of the freedom of movement and energy in a visual sense that would eventually define Art Nouveau. The floral and vegetal imagery adorning the cover bears no consonance with the subject matter of the book highlights its purpose as decorative and Mackmurdo’s experimental nature rather than a definitive mature example of Art Nouveau.

Artist: Arthur Heygate Mackmurdo
Born 12 December 1851, London, UK
English
Died 15 March 1942, Wickham Bishops, UK

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