From Modern to Modernism
Introduction by Maurice Rummens and Ingeborg de Roode
Introduction by Maurice Rummens and Ingeborg de Roode
May 9, 2023
MODERN — Van Gogh, Rietveld, Léger and others provides a fresh look at the ground-breaking work of multiple artists and art movements that developed during the 19th and early 20th centuries. In this introduction, curators Maurice Rummens and Ingeborg de Roode tell us the story behind the exhibition – a story about the connection between aesthetics and ethics. One in which the interaction between European and extra-European art and design is also heavily explored. This and more accounts of the modern period are available in the exhibition’s publication catalogue, on sale in the museum shop.
MODERN — Van Gogh, Rietveld, Léger and others is on view from 18 May until 24 September 2023.
Most people probably already have their own ideas about what “modern” signifies. According to the Van Dale Dutch dictionary, it means “relating to that which is newer” or “belonging to the present time,” and also, “in accordance with or in response to the requirements of now.” Some might think of softly humming telephones and PCs, rapid changes, challenging potentialities and choices. (Or is that perhaps instead late modern or postmodern, in our age of uncontrollable ecological peril?) If one thinks about it, the whole seems less clear-cut. Was there not modernity—being modern—with smoke-belching chimneys, pollution and poverty? Such ruinous consequences of industrial production still exist, even in highly technologically developed countries, do they not? If these different forms of modernity coexist, what about the process of modernization? This is generally understood as the process of continuous change that began in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries; a time when the capitalist economy in Europe began to flourish—in large part due to colonialism—and nation-states arose.1 Theories around modernization often assume a logical end point in history, such as the welfare economy.
In the art world we speak of modernism in a general sense. In terms of design, it is a movement where the pursuit of modernity is central, the center of gravity of which lies approximately between 1914 and 1940.2 In the visual arts, especially since 1975, it is a collective name for a number of movements and
-isms, including impressionism and constructivism, which distinguish themselves from the standard, traditional style of painting and sculpture taught at the art academies. Furthermore, it concerns either a tendency in the history of the visual arts or the tradition within art criticism that describes and propagates this development. Modernism can be interpreted both narrowly and broadly. In the broadest sense, it covers practically the entirety of modern art from around 1850 to about 1970. In a narrow sense, it points to a specific development— that in which artists sought the specifics of individual artistic disciplines. In painting, these were the flat surface and abstraction. For those who described the phenomenon, as well as museums and galleries that followed this line of thinking, for a long time the attention paid to the social context of art was scarce to none. An exhibition space with blinded windows, artificial lighting, and white walls, intended to distract as little as possible from the art itself, where every object was aestheticized and, as it were, silenced, was criticized as the “white cube” by its opponents.3
From the late 1970s, criticism of thinking of modernist art historiography as a linear progression grew (that is to say, approaching modernism in the narrow sense), and in the past decade, in particular, its Eurocentric character is being questioned. In reality, however, modern art movements often occurred simultaneously, such as impression- ism and symbolism, or Dada, De Stijl, and the
Amsterdam School and Russian suprematism and constructivism. The popular idea that modern art is a succession of actions and reactions turns out to be incorrect, nor can any grand linear development be discerned in these terms. Because very different types of art coexisted, it cannot be said that one particular type of art is representative of its time, although this is a notion that has a long history.4 The concept goes back at least to the battle cry of Émile Deschamps, quoted below, and
others. Of course, no one can escape their own time, as many an art forger and honorable restorer have discovered to their chagrin. The depictions of classical antiquity painted by Lawrence Alma Tadema are more closely linked to the age of the photograph and the can-can dance than to the Roman era that they depict (Fig. 1). Yet, however little this statement says about contemporaneity, the concept is still influential. Nowadays it is encountered in arguments claiming a particular art is “current” while another is not; the term has changed, but for the most part the idea remains the same.
Émile Deschamps, 1828
In 1828 the French poet Émile Deschamps wrote that the same caveat applies to both artists and politicians: “One must be of one’s own time.”5 In other words, anyone who does not keep up with the times, and instead allows new ideas to pass them by, is lost.
From the middle of the nineteenth century, the need for modern, contemporary expressions in the areas of visual art, design, and architecture became more pressing in Europe. With this publication and exhibition we are keen to show how twentieth-century modernism in design is the result of developments that began in the nineteenth century; it was not quite a new beginning in this case, as has frequently been suggested. Neither is contemporary social engagement in the visual arts and design a new phenomenon. Visual artists and designers who were inspired by social and technological modernity in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries were not just concerned with beauty, but with the “true” and the “good” as well. The story of the nineteenth-century roots of the twentieth-century modernism under discussion here concerns the combination or confrontation of art and morality.6 What became of this amalgamation? We conclude later with the question of what might be learned from it.
Major developments occurred throughout society during the nineteenth century. As a result of industrialization, which began in England in the mid-eighteenth century and continued to spread across Europe throughout the nineteenth century, rural areas gradually emptied and urbanization advanced (Fig. 3, 4). In response to poor working and living conditions, socialism arose, and workers founded trade unions (Fig. 5). Other groups in society also began to agitate, setting in motion the struggle for universal suffrage, women’s emancipation and more. In various European countries, prosperity was not only fueled by industrialization but also by colonial profits and the revenues reaped from enslaved people. Criticism of such practices gained in strength, leading to the gradual abolition of slavery in all European colonies between 1833 and 1873 (Fig. 2).
How could visual artists, designers, and architects in the nineteenth century make this “zeitgeist” visible, or better yet, predict its direction? Perhaps by doing something new or unusual, with the promise that it would be incorporated in society. This indeed occurred when certain practices were adopted by others and, over time, came to be appreciated by the public. These artists acted contrary to academic, anecdotal art, opposed lavish decorations that were manufactured by machines but appeared artisanal, resisted objects in historicizing styles such as Neo-Baroque and Rococo Revival, and were against obscuring building structures with concealing forms.
In the visual arts, beginning in the 1830s the brush strokes that many innovative artists used became increasingly broad and sketchy, while landscapes, the genre that sparked this innovation in France, remained unembellished. They sought to represent reality more directly and truthfully than their predecessors, the romantics, who exaggerated the beauty of their landscapes, idealizing them with anecdotal elements. From the 1850s, these innovative artists developed a tendency toward mundane representations of their own time and depicting ordinary people, even in large formats. This was realism, and it was favored by at least a portion of the public. The emerging and affluent bourgeoisie—which had supplanted nobility, government, and the church as the predominant patron of art—did not particularly care for history paintings showing scenes from the past, the mythological or biblical depictions the former ruling class had used to legitimize their status (Fig. 1). This new class of citizens preferred the genre painting with its seemingly realistic, narrative depiction borrowed from everyday life.
Likewise, beginning in the mid-nineteenth century, “modernity” was often manifested in austere forms in the applied arts. Geometry was used as an organizing principle, sometimes utilizing examples found in nature.7 Such for- mal aspects were often found in non-European examples, such as objects from the Edo period in Japan (1603–1868) and a tapa from Fiji (Fig. 6). In addition to publications and museums, the world’s fairs exposed artists to examples of such objects, whether firsthand or by leafing through the catalogues later. The Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations, which was held in London’s Crystal Palace in 1851, was the first of these. It is no coincidence, then, that the first major reform movement also arose in England, which led the rest of Europe in many developments. Although similar earlier initiatives had been organized, this particular world’s fair was an important catalyst. In 1852 a museum with examples of well-designed functional objects opened in London; today it is the Victoria & Albert Museum. Four years later, architect Owen Jones published the internationally highly influential The Grammar of Ornament, in which he presented decorative patterns from various cultures and de- scribed general principles he derived from them (Fig. 7).8 Earlier, architect A.W.N. Pugin and critic John Ruskin were already advocating a return to the principles of Gothic architecture, the social structures of the late medieval period and artisanry.9 This in turn strongly influenced designers such as William Morris, who pushed the reform movement further through designs and writings that also gave prominence to rational design. In part, this meant refraining from creating three-dimensional representations on a flat surface, because that would be counter to reality. An honest use of materials was also encouraged, one that would not conceal them. From this evolved the broader Arts and Crafts movement, which spread across Europe in the second half of the nineteenth century. This attention to craftsmanship had a major influence on Art Nouveau as well, the movement in which the pursuit of a truly new design language—one not inspired by historical styles—was key, leading to all manner of different forms of expression in Europe and the United States toward the end of the century.
From around 1865 in the European visual arts, innovators began painting with unmixed, bright colors, with which they reproduced what they saw as truthfully and directly as possible (impression- ism), while from 1885 their personal emotions and dream imagery began to figure more prominently (symbolism). In their search for contemporary, “modern” forms of expression, visual artists were also partly inspired by historical European forms as well as older and more contemporary art and design from outside Europe. They were convinced that makers during the Middle Ages or in Oceania were capable of shaping common social, moral, and religious values and narratives understood by all. Monumental art and design in public space, where it could be available to everyone, embodied this ideal. Compositions became more flatly decorative and with clearly defined motifs, in keeping with the architectural character of wall painting. The mural painted by Antoon Derkinderen in the town hall of ’s-Hertogenbosch in 1889-1891 is a well- known early modern Dutch example (Fig. 8). Due to the objections modern artists raised against the illusionistic effect of depth inherent in the aesthetics of wall painting, but also because of their symbolist perception of reality, they soon became fascinated by abstraction and letting go of figuration to an even greater degree.
In the applied arts, reformer Ralph Wornum was the first to point out the affinity of these arts with music, the most abstract art form, when he renounced the three-dimensional illusion in 1856. Flat, geometric patterns can be compared to Persian classical music or the polyphonic hymns of the medieval church, although the comparison is of course flawed in a literal sense, because decorative art lacks the element of time. Yet creating patterns does depend on time, and observing the structures and rhythms of the forms, like listening to music, is about striking a balance between the expected and the surprising. Those visual artists who, from around 1885, were captivated by abstraction also referenced music in their argumentation toward this aspiration. Applied art objects from beyond Europe, such as a tapestry from Iran or a shoulder cloth from the Maroon people of Suriname can be experienced in a comparable “musical” way to a Mondrian or Kandinsky, despite their intrinsic differences (Fig. 9).10 Manufacturers in Oceania, the Congo, Iran, Japan, Indonesia, Suriname and New Guinea, for example, created unique patterns using ornaments and signs, just as the ordering and repetition of sounds in music makes these sound patterns special compared to the normal sounds that surround us.11
Although other currents also existed in Europe— in the field of applied arts, for example, the daring Art Nouveau in Belgium and its German counterpart, Jugendstil, as well as expressionism in the visual arts—ultimately those movements having a sober, geometric, and abstract formal language in particular attracted the greatest attention from the proponents of radical modernity. “Ornament and Crime,” a 1910 lecture by the Austrian architect- designer Adolf Loos, which was later published, had a profound influence on the rejection of ornament as a sign of progress.12
The horrors of the First World War accelerated the pursuit of a new society, especially in terms of design. Modernism, a movement where the quest for a new world was paramount in all aspects, reached its zenith during the interwar period that followed. Many believed the creation of an “ideal” society for the “New Man” using universal forms was within reach. It was essential that the ex- pressions thereof would or should be accessible to everyone—preferably not just to all layers of the population but also for all kinds of different nations and cultures (hence, “universal”).
Even if they held opposing views, many agreed that a strict visual language, comprising simple geometric shapes such as rectangles and squares, a limited color palette, and materials such as steel and pressed glass, best expressed the age of technology. Modernist designer and architect Le Corbusier praised the city of New York for this very reason. What he particularly admired were the sleek concrete structures, the steel and the enormous scale, which he described in terms of brute strength and rawness.13 Yet in cases where its tenets were not carefully applied, in particular these qualities ushered in the dark side of modernism; the endless gray residential blocks that inspired writer F. Bordewijk to write his dystopian novella Blokken and later led Roberto Matta to his terrifying vision of the future in paintings like How-Ever (see p. 75). Beginning in 1915, however, when constructivism, De Stijl and the Bauhaus emerged (Fig. 11, 12), modernism indeed aimed to achieve freedom and social equality. This continued to build on the optimistic belief in progress that had arisen in the nineteenth century, through developments in new materials and techniques. More on the “engineering art” that originated from this aspect is discussed else- where in this volume.
Modernist visual arts and design were widely disseminated through other area of the world, in part due to the European diaspora triggered as a result of the Nazi threat. Many of these refugees—visual artists, architects, designers, and photographers—were able to pass on their ideas to younger generations at academies and universities in their new homes.
The most modern designs of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries were fairly to very exclusive. Over time, however, when produced in cheaper, popularized versions, they frequently contributed significantly to the well-being and aesthetic experience of large sectors of the population. As important as that category of exclusive- ness is to modernism’s evolution, the affordable designs that had a wide reach are perhaps the best examples of successful modernity: that is, objects with a contemporary design. In the Netherlands, for example, the nineteenth-century ceramics factories in Maastricht countered the beloved but rather expensive Wedgwood products from England by offering reasonably priced tableware. These items were often deco- rated using transfers, which was far more cost-effective than painting. The illusory patterns were rejected by adherents of “good” design, but the brightly colored boerenbont motifs (part transfer, part hand-painted) were appreciated by many (Fig. 10).14 In textiles, too, industrial production involving machine weaving and printing techniques and the application of simple designs made it possible to manufacture quality products for the general public (Fig. 9).
In order to provide a more nuanced picture of the Eurocentric history of modern art and point to comparable developments elsewhere in the world, lately the term “modernisms” is becoming more common in the visual arts, as seen in the publication Mapping Modernisms.15 In the design field, this notion does not seem to have gained traction just yet. It may also be more reason- able to continue using the term “modernism” exclusively in reference to the anti-traditionalist, for modernity striving European design that was at its height in the period between the First and Second World Wars and which, due to the political situation, was characterized by utopian ideals.16 Of course this also applies to examples from other parts of the world that are clearly influenced by the European modernism from the interwar period. The fact that, roughly in the same period, developments also occurred elsewhere that likewise endeavored to achieve modernity in the arts does not detract from this view. On the contrary, these are probably better studied and described by judging them on their own merits and with specifically appropriate terminology. We therefore argue against calling them “modernist” from what is still a Eurocentric perspective. That is, unless the makers in question advocate this themselves.17
Moreover, criticism of the pursuit of modernity and progress in general, and of the universal claims of modernism in particular, is increasing, as both were far from inclusive and failed to account for the consequences, the advancements they propagated have had for the Earth. This includes (the legacy of) the Bauhaus, the arts and design school in Germany so closely linked to modernism, which will inevitably endure. For one, Hicham Khalidi and Rolando Vázquez Melken raised issue with the European Commission’s intention to baptize its cultural initiative within the framework of the European Green Deal as the “New European Bauhaus.”18Vázquez Melken, a cultural sociologist following in the footsteps of Latin American thinkers such as Aníbal Quijano and Walter D. Mignolo, argues that the European pursuit of modernity has always been related to socio-economic power structures such as colonialism and its consequences, meaning this pursuit and therefore also modernism should be categorically rejected.19 A different perspective is provided by a number of historians who focus on how modernity transpires. They point to the mod- ern aspects of so-called premodern societies, for example, in the areas of science and culture, and the traditional aspects of European modernity. More figures from the historical past will have a voice, they argue, if researchers abandon the notion of a clear division between the modern and premodern world.20
In both this publication and the exhibition, our primary focus is on the intention of the manufacturer(s) of each object. The makers of artworks in the Global South frequently had different points of departure than those in Europe and North America. They interpreted the concept “art” in another way. We seek to avoid those comparisons that are based purely on visual similarities without substantive evidence, as was often the case in the 1950s.21 Our views are more aligned with the movement whose representatives consider non-European art to be part of a world history of art, hence, from the perspective that it hinges on turning things into something special.22 Art, broadly understood as “creative production,” was initially primarily used to prescribe places
or actions that should be distinguished from the usual, the ordinary—which is why art can often also occur in the context of ceremonies, as an indicator of what is important to a community, as the means to cooperate or strengthen bonds with- in a group.
In addition, in both the publication and exhibition, we offer examples of responses by non-European artists to technology, European art, and colonialism as well. We acknowledge that Japanese printmaking, for instance, which garnered interest in Europe precisely because of its two-dimension- al compositions with large fields of color, became “modernized” through linear and atmospheric perspectives adopted from Europe, allowing the realization of greater depth. The notions of “modern” or “contemporary” were virtually never employed in such contexts. By extension, puppets shaped like airplanes could presumably help to express criticisms of colonialism in satirical wayang theater.
Through this publication and the accompanying exhibition, we hope to give readers and visitors an idea of how modernization was perceived and addressed in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, as well as pose the question of how this occurs today. Among the ways a person might demonstrate their modernity—besides surrounding themselves with specific art and design, wearing certain clothes and making other lifestyle choices—is by utilizing the latest electronic media. Those who immerse themselves in the realm of the internet and social media via laptop, tablet and smartphone are in contact with the whole world. Yet personal data is also frequently given over to the providers of those media, who can in turn manipulate the users. Moreover, the rare raw materials used in smartphones and electric vehicles often originate in toxic mines where children are forced to work. The call to reclaim control of our own data and resist being tempted to buy the latest model is growing louder. Some companies are trying to reconcile this by offering more responsible products (such as the Fairphone).
However modern we aspire to be, how do we deal with the associated perils?
Fig. 1. Lawrence Alma Tadema, Hadrian Visiting a Romano-British Pottery, 1884. Oil on canvas, 159 × 171 cm. Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, gift of the Association for the Formation of a Public Collection of Contemporary Art in Amsterdam (VVHK), 1949. Alma Tadema’s painting has more to do with the era of the can-can and photography than with Roman antiquity.
Fig. 2. Anna [Ampt], Schaduwbeelden uit Suriname, Amsterdam, 1858. Allard Pierson, University of Amsterdam.
Fig. 3. Vincent van Gogh, Outskirts of Paris, view from Montmartre, 1887. Gouache, chalk, pencil and ink on paper, 39.5 × 53.5 cm. Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, gift of the Association for the Formation of a Public Collection of Contemporary Art in Amsterdam (VVHK), 1949. This gouache shows how the idyllic Montmartre with its allotments is swallowed up by the urbanization and industrialization of modern Paris.
Fig. 4. Alfred Stieglitz, The Hand of Man, 1902, printed 1911. Heliogravure (photogravure), 15.6 × 21.3 cm. Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, acquired thanks to a temporary subsidy scheme known as the WVC (which applies to the entire Diepraam collection), 1987. According to the caption accompanying this photograph in Camera Work magazine (January 1903), it is “an attempt to treat pictorially a subject [industrialization] which enters so much into our daily lives that we are apt to lose sight of the pictorial possibilities of the commonplace.”
Fig. 5. George Hendrik Breitner, Distribution of Soup, 1882. Watercolor and pencil on paper, 30 × 53 cm. Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, gift of the Association for the Formation of a Public Collection of Contemporary Art in Amsterdam (VVHK), 1949. Breitner wrote that he wanted to be a “painter of the people,” like Vincent van Gogh, with whom he spent some time.
Fig. 6 Japanese water pitcher, 1750-1807. Wood, lacquerware. Dutch National Museum of World Cultures, Inv. Nr. RV-360-674. Soberly designed Japanese objects from the Edo period (1603-1868) have an early modern look that was highly prized in Europe in the late 19th century.
Fig. 7 Arabian mosaic patterns, arranged on a geometrical system, from: Owen Jones, The Grammar of Ornament, London 1856, Plate XXXV. The Grammar of Ornament contains decorative patterns of stylized or abstract forms from various cultures and eras, with Islamic motifs being of particular interest to Jones.
Fig. 8 Antoon Derkinderen, Design for the First Bossche Wall: the Founding of ’s-Hertogenbosch by Duke Henry of Brabant, 1889-1891. Black chalk on paper, 32.5 × 57.1 cm. Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, gift of the heirs of J.D. van der Waals, Amsterdam, 1971. The word community art is first used in the Netherlands in connection with this wall painting. Reviewer Flanor (pseud. P.A.M. Boele van Hensbroek), in De Nederlandsche Spectator (1892), p. 72, speaks of the “newly forged word ‘community art.’”
Fig. 9 Unrecorded artist, Cotton shoulder cloth for men with patchwork motif, 1890-1919. Cotton, patchwork, 112.5 x 97.5 cm, Dutch National Museum of World Cultures, Inv. Nr. TM-3290-237. In Maroon culture, fabrics are transformed, using the patchwork technique, into textile art with a character and meaning all its own.
Fig. 10 Bowl with boerenbont motif, c. 1801-c. 1879. Glazed earthenware, prod. Petrus Regout, Maastricht. Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam. Adherents of “good design” rejected illustrative motifs on household objects; they preferred more two-dimensional, abstract designs such as boerenbont, which favored patterns inspired by the rural Dutch landscape.
Fig. 11 Antoine Pevsner, Construction pour un aéroport / Construction for an Airport, 1937. Bronze, patinated, 50 × Ø 75.5 cm, base plate 2.1 cm. Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam. This sculpture is an example of constructivism, an art movement that began around 1915 in Russia. The constructivists believed that art should reflect the modern industrialized world.
Fig. 12 Gerrit Rietveld, Red and Blue Chair, design 1919-1923, production of this example c. 1925. Stained and painted beech, painted birch plywood. Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam. Photo: Erik and Petra Hesmerg. In the New World that the modernists created for the New Man, creating uninterrupted space in the interior was an important ideal; Rietveld’s furniture, with its simplicity and open structure, was true to this ethos.
Ingeborg de Roode is curator of industrial design at Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam since 2001. She has organized various exhibitions including Designing for children: Aldo van Eyck’s playgrounds (2002), Marcel Wanders. Pinned Up (2014), Touch and Tweet: interactive installations (2015), Living in the Amsterdam School (2016), Solution or Utopia? Designing for refugees (2017) and, in collaboration with Pao Lien Djie, Studio Drift. Coded Nature (2018). She was co-curator of the exhibition It’s our F***ing Backyard. Designing Material Futures (2022) with Stedelijk’s design curator Amanda Pinatih. Catalogues accompanied several of these exhibitions. She has written for Het Financieele Dagblad, published several opinion pieces in NRC Handelsblad and articles in catalogues of, among others, the Centre Pompidou, MoMA and Vitra Design Museum.
Maurice Rummens is an art historian and has been a scientific researcher at Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam since 1999. He obtained his PhD at the University of Amsterdam on The Seduction of the Decorative, a thesis on the interfaces between design and visual art in theory and practice. He has published about modern art in magazines, including Jong Holland, Kunstschrift, The Burlington Magazine, and in publications of the Open University, Heerlen, and the Stedelijk Museum. He co-curated the ex- hibitions Roger Bissière: ‘La cathédrale’, tapestry (2000), Ernst Ludwig Kirchner. Tahiti in the Alps, 1918 – 1928 (2001), The Oasis of Matisse (2015), and was curator of the exhibition Chagall, Picasso, Mondrian and others: migrants in Paris (2019-20) at the Stedelijk Museum.
1 See, for instance, Ed Jonker, Moderniteit en geschiedenis: Voorzichtig pleidooi voor een redelijke geschiedschrijving (farewell speech delivered on September 16, 2015), Faculty of Humanities, University of Utrecht, www.uu.nl/sites/ default/files/afscheidsrede_ed-jonker_totaal_16-09-2015. pdf; Dipesh Chakrabarty, “The Muddle of Modernity,” The American Historical Review 116, no. 3 (2011), pp. 663-675; Gurminder K. Bhambra, “Historical Sociology, Modernity, and Postcolonial Critique,” The American Historical Review 116, no. 3 (2011), pp. 653-662.
2 The meaning of the term differs depending on (art) discipline, place and period when it was applied. See,
for instance, Kjetil Fallan, Modern Transformed: The Domestication of Industrial Design Culture in Norway, ca. 1940–1970, dissertation, Trondheim 2007, and a summary in chapter 3 of Design History: Understanding Theory and Method, London 2010. The period we use here coincides with what Fallan refers to as “Heroic/High Modernism.”
3 Brian O’Doherty, Inside the White Cube: The Ideology of the Gallery Space, Berkeley [etc.] 1999 (essays originally published in Artforum 1976 and 1986).
4 See, for example, Carel Blotkamp, “De stromingen voorbij: Kunst vanaf 1970,” in Mieke Rijnders and Patricia van Ulzen (eds.), Manieren van kijken: Inleiding kunst- geschiedenis, Heerlen 2010, pp. 409-414.
5 Émile Deschamps, “Préface,” in Études françaises et étrangères, deuxème édition, corrigée et augmentée de plusiers pièces nouvelles, Paris 1828, p. XVI.
6 This combination of concepts became popularized by the often reprinted book Du Vrai, du Beau et du Bien (Lectures on the true, the beautiful, and the good, 1837) by philos- opher Victor Cousin. He advocated seeking truth and opposed conservatism and the intertwining of ecclesi- astical and secular power. He continued to describe art traditionally, as the expression of moral beauty through material beauty.
7 For the development of the doctrine of ornamentation from a Dutch perspective, see Mienke Simon Thomas, De Leer van het Ornament: Versieren volgens voorschrift, Amsterdam 1996.
8 Owen Jones, The Grammar of Ornament, London 1856.
9 A.W.N. Pugin, Contrasts, London 1836; John Ruskin,
The Stones of Venice, 3 vol., London 1851–1853.
10 Ralph Wornum, Analysis of Ornament, London 1856.
For more on the relationship with music, see, for instance, E.H. Gombrich, The Sense of Order: A Study in the Psychology of Decorative Art, London 2006 (1st edition 1979), pp. 61-62, 285-305.
11 See Ellen Dissanayake, Homo Aestheticus: Where Art Comes From and Why, New York 1992; idem, “What are the arts for? – Professor Ellen Dissanayake,” YouTube, June 25, 2013, www.youtube.com/ watch?v=tVJeGd7AIMA.
12 Adolf Loos, “Ornament und Verbrechen” (1908), in
Adolf Loos: Sämtliche Schriften, Vienna/Munich 1962, pp. 276-288. Christopher Long dates the lecture to 1910 in “Ornament, Crime, Myth, and Meaning,” in 85th ACSA Annual Meeting Proceedings, Architecture Materials and Imagined, Dallas, TX 1997, pp. 440-445.
13 Le Corbusier, When the Cathedrals Were White, New York/Toronto/London 1964, pp. 34, 108, 205 (original edi- tion: Quand les cathédrales étaient blanches. Voyage au pays des timides, Paris 1937). See also Wim Denslagen, Observations on Urban Aesthetics: London, Paris and New York, e-book, U2pi, 2016.
14 See also Mienke Simon Thomas, “Modern Industry, Modern Ornament,” in Silvia Barisione (ed.), Modern Dutch Design, exh. cat. Miami Beach (The Wolfsonian – Florida International University) 2016, pp. 52-65.
15 Elizabeth Harney and Ruth B. Philips (eds.), Mapping Modernisms: Art, Indigeneity, Colonialism, Durham, NC 2018.
16 See Christopher Wilk (ed.), Modernism: Designing a New World 1914–1939, London 2006. Mateo Kries calls this period “the high point of Modernism,” see Mateo Kries and Jochen Eisenbrand, (eds.), Atlas of Furniture Design, Weil am Rhein 2019, p. 17.
17 For commentary on the use of the term modernity in the historical sciences, see Jonker 2015 (note 1) and Wouter van Leeuwen, “Historische blik op moderniteit,” Aanzet: Historisch Tijdschrift, October 3, 2016, Historische blik op moderniteit (wordpress.com).
18 “A New Bauhaus? The Debate for a More Inclusive Europe,” www.rektoverso.be/artikel/a-new-bauhaus-the- debate-for-a-more-inclusive-europe.
19 See, for instance, Harney and Philips 2018 (note 14); Rolando Vázquez Melken, Vistas of Modernity: Decolonial Aesthesis and the End of the Contemporary (Mondriaan Fund essay 014), Amsterdam 2020; Aníbal Quijano, “Urbanization of Society in Latin America” (1969), in Jorge Enrique Hardoy (ed.), Urbanization in Latin America, New York 1975, pp. 109-153; Walter D. Mignolo, The Darker Side of Western Modernity: Global Futures, Decolonial Options (Latin America Otherwise), Durham, NC 2011.
20 See, for instance, Carol Symes, “When We Talk About Modernity,” American Historical Review 116 (2011), no. 3, pp. 717-721; Thoralf Klein, “How Modern was Chinese Modernity? Exploring Tensions of a Contested Master Narrative,” International Journal for History, Culture and Modernity 2, no. 3 (2014), pp. 275-301.
21 See E.H. Gombrich, “André Malraux and the Crisis of Expressionism,” in idem, Meditations on a Hobby Horse and Other Essays on the Theory of Art, London/New York 1978 (1st ed. 1963), pp. 78-85.
22 See, for instance, Ellen Dissanayake, Homo Aestheticus: Where Art Comes From and Why, New York 1992; idem, “What are the arts for?” (note 11); Jeroen Stumpel, “Van spiegels en kralen: Een inleiding op het begrip ‘kunst,’” in Rijnders/Van Ulzen 2010 (note 4), pp. 13-35.