Archive for the ‘Separated at birth’ Category



Janis Rozentāls (1866 – 1916). Dubultportrets. Pašportrets ar sievu. 1905.



Martin Munkácsi: Frida Kahlo és Diego Rivera. Mexikó, 1933.  / Martin Munkácsi: Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. Mexico, 1933.


Budapest, Aesthetic Moments

Unknown Artist, Hausmann family grave, Budapest Kerepesi Cemetery




Sadness, by Julia Margaret Cameron (CameraWorks, 1905)


Gaetano Previati, la danza delle ore

Richard Riemerschmid, Wolkengespenster, 1897


see also: 




Josef Plečnik, born 23 1. 1871 Ljubljana (Ljubljana, Slovenia), † 6 1. Ibid 1957, was architect and designer. Studied in L. Theyer in Graz and 1894-98 in O. Wagner at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna, participating in Wagner’s office in the planning of the Vienna city railway; 1900-11 were his most important works in Vienna, for which he also designed the interior (Zacherl House in Vienna 1, 1903-05) ; 1911-20 teaching at the vocational school in Prague and fixtures at the Prague Castle. His most important sacred works are in Vienna (Holy Ghost Church in Vienna, 16, 1910-13) and Prague (Sacred Heart Church, 1928-32). After 1920 remained Plečnik in Ljubljana, in addition to his teaching at the university there, he determined the appearance of the city sustained by buildings and urban planning decisions and became the founder of modern Slovenian architecture, developing a formal style which became quite different by the one of his early mentors,  G. Semper and O.Wagner.

The Zacherhaus in Vienna

Zacherhaus – the building


From an article on Orf magazine (

Es war das erste "moderne" Haus in der Innenstadt – das so genannte Zacherlhaus. Den Reiz daran macht vor allem die Fassade mit den grauen, glänzenden Granitplatten und den steinernen Linien aus.
Beeindruckende Fassade.
Außergewöhnliches Stiegenhaus
Das Zacherlhaus wurde nach dem Bauherrn und damaligen Eigentümer Johann Zacherl benannt. Es zählt zu den bedeutendsten Bauten der Otto-Wagner-Schule. Im Erdgeschoss und Mezzanin ist es eines der ersten Eisenbetonbauwerke Wiens.
Geplant hat es Anfang des letzten Jahrhunderts der slowenische Architekt Josef Plecnik. Eine Besonderheit: die kleine, aber feine Eingangshalle. Insektenartige Leuchtkörper zieren das Stiegenhaus, in Anspielung auf den Mottenpulverfabrikanten und Eigentümer Johann Zacherl.

Heute ist das denkmalgeschützte Zacherlhaus ein Bürohaus. Türen und Fenster sind noch original. Fehlende Beschläge wurden sogar nachgegossen.
Im Auftrag der heutigen Eigentümers, den Nachfahren des Bauherrn Johann Zacherl, wird sehr sorgfältig mit dem Haus umgegangen. Man ist sich der Bedeutung des Hauses bewusst.

Zacherhaus – details


Clean surface with metal bronze inserts, straight lines, symmetrical decorations, linear and non-rounded statues: these the very aesthetic elements which characterize the building. An aesthetic which influenced further development of the secession style trough the Austrian Hungarian Empire. Eventually, follow up to Plečnik innovative can be found in several buildings in Budapest, designed by architect who were mostly influenced by the European secessionist movement more than by the quest for a local folk oriented Hungarian way to the Art Nouveau.

Zacherhaus – Atlas decoration

Atlas figures in Teleki tér, 1, VIII district, Budapest




Zacherhaus – Atlas decoration

Atlas figures, Vörösmarty tér 3. Kasselik-alapítvány üzlet- és bérháza(Korb Flóris és Giergl Kálmán) 1911.



Zacherhaus  – vertical lines on the angled façade

Apartments house in Becsi ut, II District Budapest (Revesz and Kollar ?)




The Aesthetic of the swirling lines constitutes a common element either in the development of Art at the turn of the Century as well as of the so-called Psychedelic Art during the ‘60s and ‘70s. Sinuous lines, symbolic elements and character attitudes, enigmatic and ambiguous expressions, are all elements that the artists of the ‘60s heavily inherited from their fin-de-siécle counterparts.

This artistic relationship sometimes happens just at stylistic level, when the psychedelic artists feel themselves free to be inspired in their works by most of the lines, patterns, shapes of the Art Nouveau poetic:

Sometimes, on the contrary, Art Nouveau or Symbolist Art masterpieces are literally brought into psychedelic style poster, overcharging colors accordingly:

The point here is that this psychedelic revisiting of Art Nouveau doesn’t look inappropriate, stylistically incompatible nor aesthetically inacceptable.

In other terms, Art Nouveau style fits perfectly into a psychedelic aesthetic and till the point the turn-of-the-century art can be considered as the very mainstream of inspiration for the psychedelic artists of the ‘60 and ‘70. This is mainly because some of the feelings and attitudes of the artists during these two periods are commonly shared.

Opening the perception to the mysterious forces hidden within the Nature, and let them come into the stream of the artist’s own feelings; discovering the expressive of the Line, of the draw, of colors, being able to mimic the Nature inner forces trough a passionate Art.

For either the Psychedelic travelers at the end of the 60s as well as for the Symbolist at the turn of the century Art constitutes the preferred way to unveil Isis or, at least, to make love with her …



Karoly Ferenczy, Archeologia, 1896, Muenchen, Germany:


Ferdnand Hodler, The Dream, Muenchen (?) 1897:

display_image.phpthe dream  hodler



I am really in love with a special book I bought some years ago. The author, Ezio Godoli, is one of the most important historian of art in Italy, as well as one of the most influencing worldwide auctority as far as the illustration is concerned. I just wonder every time I read the great analysis or simply take a look to the many illustrations. And this time I was impressed by this Russian Art Nouveau illustration:


Let alone the style, but indoubitabily it looks really similar to another illustration, due to the pencil of Aladar Korosfoi-Kriesch:


How could be fascinating and dangerous the beauty of the line: this is really a great teaching in aesthetic.



The Hungaria Spa was build in 1910 after the project of the Hungarian architect Emil Agoston in Dohany utca(eventually, who projected the Astoria Hotel, too). The history of the building, and of the spa itself, is a little bit messy. In fact the bath structure operated just until the end of the first decade of the XX century. He was converted in a Cinema in 1920 and as a Cabarè just until 1963. After that date the demolition of the structure began and nowadays what remains is just the facade, which also is in a very terrible condition. 

However the last piece of this historical building survived, and in this very days seems that restoration works finally begin.

The remaining part of the facade still presents a really impressive relief, in typical secession style, of three woman enjoying the thermal water. They aren’t mermaids strictly sense, however those feminine figures are charged with the typical art nouveau symbolism concerning female characters and the water. the pleasing and excited, even erotic, expression which could be still viewable on the female figure on the very left of the relief, is evocative of the sensual, even sexual, relationship of feminine and the natural liquid element.

Not surprisingly, since this symbolism was quite usual in the artistic production of the turn of the century, a very similar frieze can be noticed in Vienna, in Seitzergasse, 1st District. And  even if the subject itself was quite common at the time, however the resemblance between the two sculptures is really noticeable. Judge yourself: link side are the Dohany-utca Budapest woman at the bath, where on the right you can nitice the Vienna mermaids …

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DSCF7406  100_6477



After three hours of train trip, really mainly passed out sleeping, departing from Budapest I finally arrived at home. No, I didn’t find out a very fast line between Hungary and Italy, not really. The fact is that I spend an entire day in Wien and really I felt so comfortably at home that I really couldn’t imagine having really left Budapest. The two cities are maybe the most outstanding example of how Secession was an European artistic movement, rather than a national one, able to share experiences and influences without, of course, renouncing to the inner national characteristic of the style.

The author here don’t affirm at all the two cities are identical, or they could be confused. Not at all, since there are differences, by either architectural, urbanistic and artistic point of view. however the development of the Secession and of the Szecesszio have some interconnections which are more evident when comparing some buildings and artistic production in general.

In this first insight, the neoclassical turn-of-the-century tendencies and related applications in the two cities are examined.

Let’s begin this trip. Noticeably, the development of the art fin-de-siecle in both the cities have a common point in a very particular attitude toward classicism:

A building in first distric, in Wien
a neoclassic tatse building in the 6th District in Budapest …


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