III coupDefouet International Congress on Art Nouveau

The Art Nouveau European Route brings together local governments and other institutions in the common quest for the protection, promotion and diffusion of Art Nouveau heritage. While this heritage is mostly tangible – physical elements of outstanding artistic and architectural interest and beauty – it is also intangible, inasmuch as it embodies and helps to explain and understand the recent history and idiosyncrasy of our communities. 

To fully explore and bring to light the value of Art Nouveau heritage, therefore, a Congress organised by the Art Nouveau European Route cannot limit its scope to the analyses and interpretation of the tangible heritage; it must go deeper into the reality of the communities that created it. In particular, studying aspects of the creation of Art Nouveau heritage that were not publicly acknowledged or were even hidden by the communication systems of the period can provide a valuable contribution to the full comprehension of the Art Nouveau phenomenon. 

In this third edition of the coupDefouet International Congress, the main thematic strand proposes to look into new perspectives on Art Nouveau heritage of cities by means of cinematographic language. Given the coincidence in the time of the birth of both, footage from this age is especially significant. Together with other later filmed material related to Art Nouveau, it may provide new insights into this artistic movement and a deeper knowledge of what has been preserved, as well as what was lost or forgotten.

A second theme strand centres on the relationship of Art Nouveau works and artists with politics, and in particular with colonialism, while the third strand explores the crisis and decadence of European civilization in the period, and how this influenced artistic style. Finally, the section on research and doctoral theses in progress, in which presentations from both seasoned and young researchers are welcome, will complete the four thematic strands of the programme.

The Congress sessions will begin on Wednesday 27 June in the evening, with the opening conference, and will last until the early afternoon of Saturday 30. However, as is traditional in a coupDefouet Congress, a wide range of cultural and Art Nouveau-related activities will be going on throughout the whole week, from Saturday 23 June to Sunday 1 July. 

Day 1: Wednesday 27 June 2018 at the Faculty of Geography & History, University of Barcelona

09:00 Congress Inauguration
Opening Conference by Teresa M. SALA: The Vertiginous Metropolis: Animated Urban Scenes to the Rhythm of Media Culture

Strand 1 Session: The Filmed City: Art Nouveau and Cinema

Keynote Speech by José Enrique MONTERDE: Cinema and Art Nouveau

Papers presented:

  • Cyril BARDE: “The Danish Girl” (Tom Hooper, 2015): Metamorphosis of Art Nouveau
  • I. FABREGAT, I. GRAS & T-M. SALA: Barcelona: People and Landscape of Modernisme
  • Marta PIÑOL LLORET: Art Nouveau as a catalyst for exoticism in films of the 20s: L’Atlantide (Jacques Feyder, 1921), Salomé (Charles Bryant, 1923) and The Thief of Bagdad (Raoul Walsh, 1924)
  • María Pilar POBLADOR MUGA: Luis Buñuel and the Art nouveau: Memories of his childhood in Calanda and Saragossa and his influence in the scenography of the film "Él" (1953)
  • Núria F. RIUS: Modernisme snapshoted. Technological performance and embodied experience of Barcelona by amateurs from the Centre Excursionista de Catalunya´
  • Raffaella RUSSO SPENA: Cinema and the City by the avant-garde: Gaudi's architecture and Antonioni's "The Passenger"
  • Pablo SÁNCHEZ IZQUIERDO: Filming life beside the sea. Harbour, bonfires and evocations in Alicante (1905-1932)
  • Lluïsa SUÁREZ CARMONA: Cinematographic Filming in Barcelona during the Art Nouveau period
  • Ingrid STIGSDOTTER: The industrial arts exhibition in Stockholm, 1909: an I-Media-Cities case study

Afternoon Special Session at the Catalonia Film Institute
Presentation of the I-Media Cities Project
Art Nouveau Footage
Evening: Buffet dinner offered by the organisation at Antoni Gaudí’s Güell Pavilions

Day 2: Thursday 28 June 2018 at Casa Milà, La Pedrera

9:00 Welcome

STRAND 2 - Art Nouveau and Politics in the Dawn of Globalisation

Keynote Speech by Debora SILVERMAN: Art Nouveau and Politics at the Peak of European Imperialism: Horta, Van de Velde, Klimt, and Modernist Congo Style

Papers presented: 

  • Olga HARMSEN: Batik - How emancipation of Dutch housewives in the Dutch East Indies and “Back Home” influenced Art Nouveau design in Europe
  • Frédérique HAUFFMANN: A stock exchange and a political manifesto: the ambiguity of the Beurs van Berlage in Amsterdam (1898-1903)
  • Pekka KORVENMAA: Arts, design and architecture as a "political" agent: Finland - from periphery to an active region, then nation
  • Martina MALEŠIČ: Cofeehouse and Nation: Cofeehouses in Ljubljana Around 1900 as a Site of National Identification
  • Rita NOBRE PERALTA: Rafael Bordalo Pinheiro, a Portuguese Art Nouveau Artist
  • Cristina RODRÍGUEZ-SAMANIEGO & Natàlia ESQUINAS GIMÉNEZ: Art and politics in 1900 Catalan Sculpture in Latin America
  • Ruth SACKS: “Style Congo” in the Congo: Tracing Art Nouveau in Mbanza-Ngungu
  • Svitlana SHIELLS: Japanese Aesthetics and Gustav Klimt: In Pursuit of a New Voice
  • Jos VANDENBREEDEN: Art Nouveau and Socialism, the Heritage of the Socialist Cooperatives 
  • Ottobrina VOCCOLI: Liberty, trades and colonial politics in Genoa

STRAND 4 – Research and Doctoral Thesis in Progress

Papers presented: 

  • PINÓS GUIRAO, Gabriel: Joan Cardona i Lladós
  • Mario BAECK: From the luxurious to the rustic. Belgian art nouveau ceramics between industry and craftmanship
  • Eszter BALDAVÁRI: The etymological problem of Szecesszió in Hungary via Albert Kálmán Kőrössy’s oevre
  • Mariola BORRELL ESCUDÉ: Bernardí Martorell i Puig, architect (Barcelona, 1877-1937)
  • Anna HERNANDEZ TUDELA: The influence of Viennese Secession: the Art Nouveau architect Joan Amigó Barriga, status of the issue

Day 3: Friday 29 June 2018 at Casa Milà, La Pedrera


STRAND 3 - Les Fleurs du Mal: Style in a Troubled Age

Keynote Speech by Paul GREENHALGH: Les Fleurs du Mal: Style in a Troubled Age

Papers presented: 

  • BEJARANO VEIGA, Juan Carlos: And the bride wore black… Eros and Thanatos at "Mi funeral" by Miguel Viladrich
  • Mariàngels FONDEVILA & Elena LLORENS: Beauty & Eroticism in Fin-de-siècle Art
  • Irene GRAS VALERO: Macabre loves: from the erotization of dying beauty to corpse profanation
  • Tove Kristin LANDE: The darker side of Art Nouveau - Eros and Thanatos in Art Nouveau Iconography
  • Thomas MOSER: Buildings of Flesh and Bone Embodied Architecture in French Art Nouveau
  • Txema ROMERO MARTÍNEZ: Ismael Smith, Nude and Naked

STRAND 4 (cont.) – Research and Doctoral Thesis in Progress

Papers presented:

  • Fàtima LÓPEZ PÉREZ: International Research of Art Nouveau in Puebla (Mexico)
  • Maarten NUBÉ: The relationship between poster design and other artistic output during the era of Art Nouveau and Jugendstil
  • Carles RIUS SANTAMARIA: Light and Aesthetic Geometry as Ways of Redemption in the Church of Valldonzella monastery
  • Saskia THOELEN: Promoting Art Nouveau in Modern Tokyo - Mitsukoshi’s Discourse of the “Contemporary Kimono”
  • Lilla ZÁMBÓ: From the "Little Blue Church" to European Heritage - Heritagisation of the Hungarian Art Nouveau Architecture in the Carpathian Basin (the example of Bratislava)

Day 4: Saturday 30 June 2018 at the town of Terrassa

Barcelona-Terrassa and return bus service offered by the organisation
Art Nouveau visit

Closing Conference of the Congress by Franz SMOLA: Vienna 1918 – The end of the Habsburg Monarchy. Commemorating the deaths of Otto Wagner, Gustav Klimt, Koloman Moser and Egon Schiele

Buffet lunch offered by the organisation

Scientific Committee of the Congress:

  • Mireia Freixa – President of the 3rd cDf Congress Scientific Committee. Professor of Art History at the University of Barcelona
  • Teresa M. Sala – Vice-President of the 3rd cDf Congress Scientific Committee. Doctor in History of Art and Lecturer at the University of Barcelona 
  • Viktorija Aladžić – Doctor in Architecture and lecturer at the University of Novi Sad
  • Mariona Bruzzo – Head of the Conservation and Restoration Department of the Filmoteca de Catalunya Film Archive
  • Giulietta Fassino – Doctor in History of Architecture and Head of Cultural Activities at the Urban Center Metropolitano of Turin
  • Domènech Ferran – Doctor in History of Art and Director of the Terrassa Museum
  • Paul Greenhalgh – Professor of Art History at the University of East Anglia and Director of the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts
  • Xavier Roigé – Doctor in Anthropology and lecturer at the University of Barcelona
  • Debora Silverman – Distinguished Professor & Presidential Chair in Modern European History, Art and Culture at UCLA
  • Franz Smola – Doctor in History of Art and Doctor in Law Studies. Curator of Collections at the Belvedere Museum of Vienna
  • Ingrid Stigsdotter – Doctor in Film Studies and Researcher in Cinema Studies at the Department for Media Studies of Stockholm University
  • Pilar Vélez – Doctor in Art History and Director of the Barcelona Design Museum
  • Ingo Zechner – Doctor in Philosophy and Director of the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for History and Society, Vienna

Executive Committee:

  • Barcelona City Council
  • University of Barcelona
  • Catalunya - La Pedrera Foundation