Christopher Dresser Design

dresser-designI was working my way through Christopher Dresser’s (1834-1904) wonderful book Principles of Decorative Design for ReusableArt.com and came across this design. In a chapter where he talks about historical design elements and how they were used to represent strength, protection, power and energy, he included this original work.

Not really finding a home for it on Reusable Art, I thought it would make a great addition to the Design Category here on FreeVintageArt.com.

In his own words, Dresser describes this work…”I have sought to embody chiefly the one idea of power, energy, force, or vigor; and in order to this, I have employed such lines as we see in the bursting buds of spring, when the energy of growth is at its maximum, and especially such as are to be seen in the spring growth of a luxuriant tropical vegetation; I have also availed myself of those forms to be seen in certain bones of birds which are associated with the organs of flight, and which give us an impression of great strength, as well as those observable in the powerful propelling fins of certain species of fish.” (and yes, that was written all as one sentence by Dresser)

Now that you’ve read that perhaps you can understand why I deferred to his own description and why I wasn’t sure where to share his wonderful piece.

I’ve left it as I found it in the book. I think it is already a striking piece of art. However, with the addition of bold colors, I bet it would literally leap off of the page.

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