Chris Agterberg was, especially during the interwar period, an active member in many different fields of the applied arts movement. He was the son of a manual labourer who worked at a gypsum factory. Agterberg decided at a young age that he wanted to become an artist. When he could not find work as a modeller in the Netherlands, he took a job at a German firm in Eberfeld. During his time there, he followed evening classes in pottery, bookbinding and embossing at the local arts and crafts school. He opened an applied arts studio for 'modern sculptures and decorative art' in Utrecht in 1919. Agterberg mainly saw himself as a sculptor. He created bronze sculptures of both humans and animals in a style that was related to the Amsterdam School; a combination of symbolism and expressionism. In the twenties, Agterberg mostly worked with tin and white metal. These materials were used to create utensils and jewellery in modernistic shapes, and often had a hammered surface.
Begeer Company Carel Joseph Begeer worked at the 'Utrecht Silver Factory of S. and J. van Lier & Son and G.F.W. Bauer' when he founded the 'Utrecht Silverware Factory of C.J. Begeer'. He only produced silver dinnerware, cutlery and decorative objects in historical styles. A good example of both the company's clients as well as the designs created around this time is the 'surtout de table'. This is a dinner service, made in the style of Louis XV, that Maurits Lens crated in 1888 for King Willem II. Since Bergeer was one of the few Dutch factories that dealt with noble metal, he was very interested in the latest design trends around 1900. Carel J. Begeer's son, Cornelis L.J. Begeer, worked as a partner in the factory. Around 1900, the factory started producing silver objects in the Art Nouveau style under Cornelis' guidance. Stepson Carel J.A. Begeer was also a designer and he took artistic leadership of the factory in 1904. Even though his German education in the Jugendstil shows in his design, his products also display Roman/naturalistic decorations and Medieval influences The designs of artists Jan Eisenloeffel, Harm Ellens, Chris van der Hoef, George Lantman and Erich Wichmann were all produced by Begeer as well. In 1919, royal supplier 'Begeer' fused with the company 'Van Kempen & Sons' and the company 'J. Vos'. From 1925 onwards, the firm stared making items that could be produced in a less labourintensive way; it started producing mechanically and in series. The thirties were a difficult time for the factory, as it was for most businesses, and it started producing silver-plated and stainless steel cutlery. The aftermath of the Second World War forced the company to merge with his most important rival 'Gerritsen & van Kempen'. Nowadays this company is settled in Zoetemeer.
Cartier is the name of a French jeweller's shop that specialises in making very luxurious jewellery. Cartier was founded by Louis Cartier around 1900. He was a French goldsmith who invented the first fully-functioning wristwatch. Cartier was the first brand of jewellery in the world. Previously, there were only individually operating jewellers.
Carl Fabergé (1846-1920) was a famous Russian jeweller who worked at St Petersburg's court until the Russian Revolution in 1917. His carefully decorated, detailed Easter eggs and his technique when it comes to enamel are famous.
George Fouquet (1860-1957), jeweller. In 1895, Fouquet took over his father's jewellery shop but he had already been designing jewellery for ten years prior to this. He would quickly become one of the best jewellers in the French Art Nouveau movement. He was chosen to be chairman of the Parisian 'Exposition Internationale des Arts Décoratifs et Modernes' by the jewellers' trade union in 1925. The inspiration for his jewellery came from Egyptian, Japanese and oriental art that also features in the designs of Jugendstil artists Samuel Grasset and Alphonse Maria Mucha.
Josef Franz Maria Hoffmann (1870-1956) was an Austrian architect and designer. He was involved with the foundation of the Wiener Secession and he was the central figure behind the Wiener Werkstätte (which he founded in 1903). The work was heavily influenced by the British Arts and Crafts movement. Reduced straight lines greatly influenced the geometrical forms of the Modernist movement. His ornaments are based on the principle of repeating similar elements; specifically the square.
Archibald Knox (1864-1933) was a Scottish Art Nouveau designer. He used his design talent for a large range of subjects that also included jewellery. His work sets itself apart by supple, infinite, intertwined shapes based on Celtic art.
René Lalique (1860-1945) was a French designer. He designed jewellery for prominent French jewellers such as Cartier and Boucheron. He opened his own company in 1885 and also started creating his own line of jewellery. In 1890, Lalique was known as one of the most important French, Art Nouveau jewellery designers. He also delivered innovative pieces to Samuel Bing's new store in Paris "Maison de l' Art Nouveau". The name René Lalique is a synonym for creativity, beauty and quality.
Charles Rennie Mackintosh (1868-1928) was a Scottish architect and designer. He was also one of the most famous representatives of the Arts and Crafts movement. His inspiration came from Scottish traditions, nature and Japanese shapes. Around 1900, he gained fame because of the success of Art Nouveau in Europe and in the United States. While he did not get many reactions from those in his homeland, people in Germany and Austria were very interested in him. This was because of his participation in the exhibition of the Wiener Secession in 1900. One of his trademarks is the use of elegant vertical lines. Common motifs in Charles Rennie Mackintosh's work are the rosebud and the egg shape.
Luis Masriera (1872-1958) was a versatile artist and, among other things, goldsmith. He was a Spanish pioneer when it comes to Modernism (Art Nouveau). His jewellery, often depicting nymphs, flowers and dragonflies, are world famous!
The brothers Reggers Fons and Rein Reggers opened the firm brothers Reggers in Amsterdam in 1919. The brothers came from a family of goldsmiths that lived in the Dutch province of Brabant. At first, the brothers only worked with J.F. Hamburger, but it was not long until they made a name for themselves. They divided the work: Fons was the designer and Rein was responsible for the company's management. The company delivered its products to jewellers and art dealers. Reggers' jewellery was striking. The pieces are often made from silver and they usually have red coral accents. Characteristic of Fons Reggers' jewellery is the hammered surface and the a-symmetrical or curved lines. The jewellery's features are similar to that of the international Art Nouveau and the expressionistic shapes of the Amsterdam School. Since the company was very successful, it was able to use gold in their work after the war. They even started making clocks, candlesticks and altar rails. Reggers was taken over by Dutch Chainworks in 1960. This was a subsidiary company of Van Kempen & Begeer which was situated in Voorschoten. Dutch Chainworks also went bankrupt in 1985.
The designer Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848-1933) was born in New York. His parents had a company called Tiffany and Co that made watches, jewellery with gemstones and silverware.
Henry Clemens van de Velde (1863-1957) was a Belgian painter, designer and architect. Together with Victor Horta, he is considered to be one of the most important representatives of the Art Nouveau movement and he is sometimes called the apostle of functionalism. Since the early years of the 20th century, he, especially in Germany, played a prominent role in architecture and decorative arts. Van de Velde studied the art of painting at a school of arts in Antwerp. He also studied with painter Carolus-Duran in Paris. He painted in the neo-impressionistic pointillism style and he joined a group of artists in Brussels called Les XX in 1889. From 1892 onwards, he stopped busying himself with painting and became interested in applied arts, jewellery, porcelain, cutlery, fashion design, carpet- and fabric design and also the construction of his own home in Ukkel 'Bloemenwerf'. Van der Velde was influenced by the English Arts and Crafts movement. John Ruskin and William Morris were two of the first architects and furniture designers that worked in an abstract style with curved lines. Van de Velde resisted the copying of historical styles and deliberately chose an original (contemporary) design. Around the turn of the 20th century, he settled in Germany and became the head of the Weimar school of Arts and Crafts (which was later called Bauhaus).
Henri Vever (185401942) was a French jeweller and Art Nouveau specialist.