Art deco or deco, is an eclectic artistic and design style that began in Paris in the 1920s and flourished internationally throughout the 1930s and into the World War II era.The style influenced all areas of design, including architecture and interior design, industrial design, fashion and jewelry, as well as the visual arts...
In America, Art Deco also became highly associated with Hollywood. The costumes, set designs, furnishings for movies, posters, and other Hollywood design from the 1920s through the 1940s helped to popularize the style to the widest possible audience.
At the 1925 exhibition exceptional designers and manufactures such as Jacques Ruhlmann, Sue et Mare, Jules Leleu, Andre Groult and Maurice Dufrene collaborated with the artisans and designers from the major Parisian department stores, to create splendid pavilions in which to show off their new contemporary designs.
Coco Chanel, more than any other designer, was sensitive to the spirit of the era. Her place in the design world was confirmed when she was included in the Exposition des Arts Decoratifs of 1925, the landmark exhibition of modern decorative arts that defined—and lent its name to—the Art Deco style.
In the years between the world wars, everything from furniture and fashion to architecture and industrial design came under the sway of a flashy art style variously known as Industrial Moderne, Jazz Moderne and Streamline Moderne. Flourishing nearly everywhere, it represented the first global design fad. Yet by the time it ran out of steam, it still had no agreed name. Only in the mid-1960's was it tagged Art Deco.
Condemned by Modernists as decadent, Art Deco's interiors were soon being replaced by ''cleaner'' looks, but in the 1970's a certain nostalgia for Art Deco set in.
Not only was Art Deco influenced by European design movements, it was also highly influenced by the design of numerous traditional and ancient cultures: Egyptian, Japanese, sub-Saharan Africa, Mayan and Aztec cultures, and others.
With the advent of the Jazz Age, artists, architects, and designers searched for modern forms and decorative motifs that reflected this exciting new era.
They found them in the alluring geometry of chevrons, lozenges, zigzags, and fan shapes, and incorporated machine-made technology and materials into their works.
With their bobbed hair, slender silhouettes, and exposed knees, flappers of the day embraced a new personal aesthetic along with the youthful exuberance that it came to represent.
One of the classic Art Deco themes is that of 1930s-era skyscrapers such as New York's Chrysler Building and Empire State Building. The former, designed by architect William Van Alen, is considered to be one of the world's great Art Deco style buildings.