Alphonse Mucha: Art Nouveau/Nouvelle Femme
June 20–October 6, 2019

Alphonse Mucha, born in Moravia, came to Paris in 1887. Over the next 8 years, he emerged from obscurity to become the most celebrated graphic designer of the Art Nouveau movement. His intricate designs and gorgeous subjects were so popular that he produced pattern books for fellow designers and students, and his publishers repurposed his advertisements for hundreds of other products.

“I predict you will be famous”

—Sarah Bernhardt

But his style and status all started when he met the legendary Sarah Bernhardt, the most famous actress of her day. Mucha’s first poster for her not only launched his graphic design career, but elevated her fame, as the public buzz for the image was completely unprecedented.

From that moment on, Mucha used alluring, strong women to advertise everything from cookies to bicycles, alcohol to rolling papers. These women were part of a budding 20th-Century world wherein they had newfound independence and social agency. Through them, Mucha changed the world of advertising and brought Art Nouveau to the streets.

This collection comes to Poster House through a generous loan from the Richard Fuxa Foundation, which houses the most complete collection of Alphonse Mucha and is one of the preeminent supporters of Czech heritage and art.



Selected Images
Zodiac, 1896
Monaco Monte-Carlo, 1897
Job, 1896
Étoile du Matin from The Stars series, 1902
Flirt, 1900
La Dame aux Camélias, 1896
Médée, 1898
Cycles Perfecta, 1902
Été from The Seasons series, 1896
L'Émeraude from The Precious Stones series, 1900