Long Hair Don’t Care: Tress Obsession with Alphonse Mucha
Alphonse Mucha was a Czech artist whose Art Nouveau paintings, prints, and illustrations attracted much attention and commercial success in the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. His work was highly stylized and very recognizable. Art Nouveau never looked so romantic. And while we’re forever in awe of Mucha’s botanical detailing, pleasure-seeking females, and whimsical subject matters, we’re also kind of obsessed with how his subjects seem to rock the most amazing hairstyles.
Brides-to-be should find these looks particularly Pinterest-ing: no one does thick, rich tresses like Mucha. Here are some of our favorite looks to fill your inspiration boards for your big day:
Style: Tousled Curls
Created as an advertisement for Job Cigarettes in 1898, Mucha cleverly mimics the curling smoke of the cigarette through the ornate curls of the model’s long tresses. Adding a little coral barrette detail further exaggerates the richness of this look.
Style: Retro Half-Up/Half-Down
Mucha loved Byzantine decoration – the mosaics, the iconography, the ornate materials – and was continuously inspired by it in much of his art. The curls of the hair are reminiscent of the arabesque-inspired motif in the background.
Style: Mermaid Waves
Taking tones from the rosy dress, this all-natural mane is a mix of auburn, red, and peach colors that showcases Mucha’s love of circular composition.
Style: Straight Chic
Who knew hair could lead you to your next cocktail? In this image, the artist utilizes a thick, flat section of hair to draw the eye towards a bottle of La Trappistine liquor. Advertising by hair for something other than a blow-out. Well played, Mucha.
Style: Flower Child Top Knot
If you ever daydreamed about making daisy-chain crowns, this style will speak to your inner flower child: a golden blond up-do held by flowers. We think it’s a perfectly acceptable style for any barbecue, Shakespeare festival, or Woodstock revival. Just watch out for bees.
Style: Hollywood Glam
Zodiac is one of Mucha’s most famous and commercialized works. The ten signs of the Zodiac can be found within the large disc in the background of the composition. The central figure’s rusty mane may be contained by an ornate crown, but Mucha still hints at its wildness with unruly ends. We love how the strands break the frame of the figure, further illustrating the organic forms Art Nouveau celebrated.
Featured Image: Pietre Preziose, 1900