Art Nouveau style is a particular form of architecture, art and applied art that is based in organic beauty as opposed to classical, academic art. Art Nouveau gained popularity in 1890 and was heartily embraced until about 1905, when it fell out of favor. This style of art was characterized by a belief that all of life was art, and as a result, all of life should be treated as an art form. This flew in the face of classic art, which was reserved for the wealthy. This new art philosophy was the art of the people.
Art Nouveau Origins
The Art Nouveau movement began with a poster created by Alfons Mucha for the play, Gismonda. The poster Mucha produced became very popular, and soon a new art style burst on the scene, inspired by Mucha's work.
Art Nouveau Elements
You can identify Art Nouveau style art and architecture by looking for some specific elements.