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The start of the last century was marked by great changes and expectations. In artistic circles, many people tried to find inspiration in exuberant flora and unbridled nature. And the last artistic style was born – Art Nouveau. This beautiful combination of the world of people with the world of nature is visible in many buildings, villas, in pictures, in a fashion style and in applied design.

Luxury Art Nouveau served up by Prague

Mgr. Jana Höger
03.May 2017
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1 minute to read
Obecní dům, Smetanova síň

Prague boasts dozens of architectural gems in the Art Nouveau style and it is my pleasant duty to present some of them to you. 

The Municipal House of the Royal City of Prague

The original name dates back to 1905, when building work started in line with the winning design in an architectural tender drawn up by Messrs Antonín Balšánek and Osvald Polívka. The Municipal House stands on the site of the former residence of Czech kings, i.e. on Náměstí Republiky. The exclusiveness of the building is also confirmed by the names of other artists who participated in its decoration with paintings and statues – Mikoláš Aleš, Max Švabinský, František Ženíšek, Alfons Mucha and others. The building with a characteristic articulated frame and ornamental façade is the very epitome of luxury.

Prague Main Railway Station

You will find the Main Railway Station at the address Wilsonova 300/8, which is the reason it was known as Prague – Wilson Station in the 40s and 50s. The person responsible for this unique Art Nouveau building is the famous architect Josef Fanta, who converted the original neo-Renaissance building and enlarged it. The tracks were covered with sophisticated metal semi-arches with a span of 33.3 m and height of 18 m. The beauty of Art Nouveau also penetrated through into the interior and the utility buildings such as the station hall. We can see this nowadays in the renovated Fanta Café. Time thus stands still for a moment and the rhythmic sounds of the passing trains subside when you sit and admire the murals over a cup of great coffee.

Pronájem 2kk, Praha 1, 60m2
Pronájem 2kk, Praha 1, 60m2, Praha 1

The luxurious Villa Bílek

This building is currently home to Prague City Gallery, but was originally the residence of the eminent architect František Bílek. It is located in the affluent district of Prague-Hradčany. The architect built it in 1911 using the hidden symbolism of a grain field and creating an unusual floor plan which is meant to be reminiscent of the trail left by a scythe. The façade is therefore semi-circular with distinctive columns like sheaves of grain. Inclination towards nature is also indicated by the material used – visible brickwork.

This is only a short list of the things built in our country in the spirit of Art Nouveau. Luxury, sophistication, decoration, bold lines – this is the common denominator of Art Nouveau architecture in our country.

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