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Exhibition Biedermeier, from Craftsmanship to Design

from October 18, 2007 to January 14, 2008

Vienna and Prague, 1815–30

An aesthetic trend descended from neoclassicism, the Biedermeier style developed in central Europe between 1815 and 1848, the period of peace following the Napoleonic Wars. The Biedermeier style was highly original, at once simple and full of imagination.

An invitation to a journey through political, social and cultural history, the Biedermeier style perfectly embodies the values of a new art of living between 1815 and 1848. The term
“Biedermeier” was derived from the name of a fictional character introduced to readers of a Munich satirical weekly in the 1840s. This everyman, Weiland Gottlieb Biedermaier (the
original spelling) by name, was the embodiment of the model citizen, leading an uneventful and comfortable existence, more concerned with his family and his own naïve attempts at poetry than politics. A nostalgic take on this way of life prevalent in Central Europe in the 19th century, Biedermeier came to describe a style that was cozy and stolid.

The aim of this exhibition is to underscore the singularity of this movement as a harbinger of many aspects of modern aesthetics, including the age of industrial design. The objects presented include furniture, silver, crystal and porcelain pieces, wallpapers and textile samples, together with depictions of interiors, botanical studies and a few paintings. The presentation of these furnishings and objects invites the visitor to consider them under a new light, as original creations notable for their shapes, surfaces and dimensions.

Organized by: Marc Bascou, chief curator, Department of Decorative Arts, Musée du Louvre, assisted by Béatrice Coullaré.

Practical information

Sully Wing

Salle de la Chapelle
18 October 2007 - 14 January 2008
Admission included in the ticket to the permanent collections.