Studio: international art — 22.1901

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Josef Hoffmann

JOSEF HOFFMANN — ARCHI- On the walls was stretched a sort of toile-a-voile
TECT AND DECORATOR. °^ ^S^t greenish grey, ornamented with yellow and
BY FERNAND KHNOPFF white applicatiojis. The wood-work was in plain

oak, stained dark brown-purple ; while the yellow-
The advantages and the disadvantages of the gold silk tapestries used for the portilres and the
great Universal Exhibitions have often been con- sofas was made in Vienna by the firm of J.
sidered ; indeed, the subject might be discussed to Backhausen and Son, from a design by M. K.
eternity. In any case, these big international Moser, an active Secessionist and a very charming
gatherings afford occasion for many notable dis- and skilful decorator. The walls of the little room
plays such as would otherwise be impossible, devoted to water-colours and drawings were hung
Thus, at the Paris Exhibition, the remarkable with bluish-green draperies, and the wood-work
show made by Austria brought right to the front a and the furniture was of white polished maple,
group of Viennese artists—Secessionists—whose The same exquisite finish was seen, even in the
curious works had only too often aroused at home frames—old gold for the paintings, and varnished
both animosity and ridicule. Nevertheless, their white for the water-colours and drawings,
success was complete on this occasion, and from All this produced a charming general effect, and
all quarters came evidence of frank admiration. testified unmistakably to the refined taste and

In the November issue of The Studio M. skilful ingenuity of Josef Hoffmann, who revealed
Gabriel Mourey praised, as it deserved, the intelli- himself both decorator and architect. It recalled
gent arrangement of the Austrian section, the in the pleasantest manner the superb arrangements
frank modernity of its
various sections, notably
that of the Beaux Arts,
in the Grand Palais des
Champs Elysees, which he
described as a model of
its kind. And in a special
number of the "Figaro
Illustre " M. Arsene Alex-
andre was impelled to write
in these terms: — "The
Secession sought to give
the whole world a lesson
in elegance, in the respect
due to works of art, and
in their proper disposition.
In this it was entirely
successful, and the atmo-
sphere of this section was
so delicate, so harmonious,
that from first to last these
two delightful galleries
never failed to call forth
unanimous exclamations of

The arrangement of the
two galleries was the work
of the architect, Mr. Josef
Hoffmann, now vice-presi-
dent of the Vienna Se-
cession, his plans being
executed by the Viennese * ^ ~

firm of J. W. Miiller and fittings of the secessionists'

Carl Giani, jun. exhibition hall, Vienna designed by josef hoffmann

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