Saturday, August 19, 2017

Emmanuel "Manuel" Orazi

I thought it would be interesting to feature the art of Emmanuel Orazi, an Italian graphic artist, who created posters, jewelry designs, illustrations and movie set designs.


Emmanuel "Manuel" Orazi was born in Italy in 1860 and worked in Paris creating graphic art. There's not a lot of information on the internet (that I've found so far) but there are some bits of info I have gleaned...

In 1892 Orazi moved to Paris and established himself as an artist working in the Art Nouveau style. He created newspaper illustrations, advertisements and book illustrations.

Advertisement for Job cigarette papers by Orazi.
Book illustration for "The wonderful adventures of Huon of Bordeaux"

"Ophelia" illustration by Orazi

A few years later in 1896, Orazi was commissioned to create an advertisement for the gallery Maison de l’Art Nouveau (House of New Art) in Paris. This gallery (started by Samuel Bing) showcased a collection of modern artworks. Artists were invited to display their pieces in the "new style" of art nouveau. This launched him into being recognized at the time.

One of Orazi's most interesting projects was in 1895 when he created an occult-themed calendar, the "Calendrier Magique," (which was a spoof of religious calendars of the time). He collaborated with author, Austin De Croz, and only 777 editions were produced. The double-paged calendar was intended to be a parody exploring 1895 as "the year of magic." The illustrations are eerie, dark, campy and with a flair for the unusual.

"Black Mass", 1903 illustration for satire magazine, "L'Assiette au beurre," depicting literary figures, Lord Alfred Douglas, Oscar Wilde, Maurice Maeterlinck and Marcel Proust.

"La belle sans nom" (The pretty girl without a name). Painting by Manuel Orazi illustrating a literary work by Jean Rameau. From Figaro Illustré, 1900.

From what I have gathered, Orazi made illustrations for French magazines like Figaro Illustré and the satirical newspaper, "L’Assiette au beurre" (The Butter Plate). He also did the art for several written works like "Les Fleurs du mal" by Baudelaire; "Aventures merveilleuses de Huon de Bordeaux" (The wonderful adventures of Huon of Bordeaux) by Gaston Paris; and "Aphrodite" by Pierre Louis.

La Maison Moderne advertisement (1902)

Orazi, in addition to being a talented poster artist, also designed hair combs. In his poster for La Maison Moderne (1902) you can see the unique hair comb design.

These images (above) from a 1902 book show designs of haircombs and hatpins/hairpins that Orazi (sometimes credited as "Orazzi") created.

Later in life Orazi was in charge of making set designs and costume designs for the 1921 French-Belgian silent film, "L'Atlantide". In addition to painting and designing sets, Orazi also designed posters promoting the movie (which can be seen above).

Poster for "L'Hippodrome" at the boulevard de Clichy, Paris, France (c. 1900).

I first came across Orazi's work for "L'Hippodrome," which I thought was incredibly detailed. One of the things I noticed about Orazi's art was his unique style when painting jewelry or costumes.  His artwork tends to radiate a fantastical style and sometimes I see a bit of surrealism in his works too.

Orazi passed away in 1934 leaving behind many beautiful designs and artwork which we still enjoy today.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Artist Feature: Kelly Morgen

Welcome to the new blog! This new adventure in blogging will take the previous outlet on Tumblr to a larger blog format where I can write in depth with more information. It took a lot of planning and decision making to go forward with it but I hope you all will like the content featured here!

For the first post of this blog I would like to introduce you to the fine jewelry creations of Kelly Morgen. I recently discovered her work online and was thrilled upon finding it.

"Goddess of the Stars" by Kelly Morgen (©Kelly Morgen)

Kelly is an artist based on the West Coast of the U.S. who studied metalsmithing abroad in Europe. She works with precious metals (sterling silver, 18k gold), natural stones, enamel, cloisonné and recycled piano keys to craft amazing pendants and pieces that are out of this world beautiful. She finds inspiration from the Art Nouveau movement and her flowing, organic designs embody the female and floral motifs found in many artworks of that era.

She is of a select few people who have had the honor to gain approval of Mucha's family and heirs to create works that are officially licensed with the Mucha family name.

As an introduction to her and her work, I have paraphrased the bio on her official website. For more about her beginnings, read on....


"The Fairy Bower" by Kelly Morgen (©Kelly Morgen)

Kelly grew up in a family that appreciated art and art nouveau. She recalls that while growing up, her house had Mucha prints (her father loved Mucha) and other various posters of beautiful art. She pursued her various artistic talents like painting throughout high school and later went to Williams College in Massachusetts. After studying abroad in Italy she discovered a metalmsithing class for beginners and it was, "love at first sawblade". She spent a year apprenticing in Italy under the direction of a master goldsmith.

"Astrea" by Kelly Morgen (©Kelly Morgen)

After her apprenticeship she studied silversmithing in the state of Montana with a Cherokee shaman. This period of study gave her insight on how to create jewelry that told a story and was also symbolic as well.

In 2015 Kelly attended a metalsmithing program in London where she later became an official licensed jeweler of the Alphonse Mucha family name.

"Pele" by Kelly Morgen (©Kelly Morgen)

Her work was included alongside the art exhibit "Alphonse Mucha: Quest for Beauty" which traveled the world. Kelly's work has been published and exhibited in many collections and is in the private collections of renown authors and creators.

"Goddess of the Iris" by Kelly Morgen (©Kelly Morgen)

With artists like Kelly Morgen the art nouveau style will be kept alive and thriving. Artists, whether they are jewelery designers, painters or sculptors, have a unique contribution to the movement and Kelly is a part of that special group.

You can follow Kelly on Facebook, Instagram, or visit her official website to purchase or view her pieces.

Thank you so much for sharing your talent with us all!

(All images have been used with permission...thanks!)

Template designed by Rainy Day