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L 101 Feather.jpg


«The marvellous poem of the human body…and the music of lines and colours emanating from flowers, leaves and fruits are the most obvious teachers of our eyes and taste.»

—Alphonse Mucha


In 1896, Mucha and his printer Champenois embarked upon a new enterprise – decorative panels (panneaux décoratifs). These were posters primarily without text, designed purely for aesthetic appreciation. Produced in large quantities, these panels were available to the wider public, becoming an alternative form of art. Of the panels, Mucha later wrote:

“I was happy to be involved in art for the people and not for private drawing rooms. It was inexpensive, accessible to the general public, and it found a home in poor families as well as in more affluent circles.”

It was Mucha’s belief that beautiful works of art would elevate the morale of the people and improve the quality of their lives. Therefore, he also believed that it was his mission as an artist to promote art for ordinary people. For Mucha, decorative panels were an ideal means to realise his aspiration, and his design formulas, popularly known as ‘le style Mucha’, became a visual language to communicate his message of beauty to the wider public.

This section looks at two strands of Mucha’s work: decorative panels, which served as vehicles to express Mucha’s artistic ideals; and didactic publications such as Documents décoratifs (1902), which contributed to the dissemination of le style Mucha across Europe and to the other side of the Atlantic.

The feather, 1899

Colour lithograph
71 x 27,5 cm
Copyright© 2023 Mucha Trust

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