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Louis Comfort

United States 
Louis Comfort Tiffany (February 18, 1848 - January 17, 1933, New York) - American artist, chemist, glass master, one of the most prominent designers in the field of decorative art, who worked in the Art Nouveau style.

Features of the work of the artist Louis Comfort Tiffany: After receiving an art education, at 24, Louis Comfort Tiffany (LCT) devoted himself to the study of chemistry and new methods for the production of glass for decorative work. He invented several new ways of making glass mass - opalescent window glass, “favril” glass, Lustred glass, breathed new life into the technique of creating iris glass, developed methods for texturing glass. Replacing traditional lead with copper foil, Tiffany made the stained glass technique more refined, subtle and attractive. The artist created a rich palette of glass of bright, rich colors and shades, which he used to create stained-glass windows, mosaics, household items. Tiffany did a lot to approve the philosophy of the unity of design of the entire interior, producing a wide range of diverse furnishings that could be harmoniously varied within a single style. The name Tiffany has become synonymous with the exquisite decoration of the Art Nouveau interior using natural ornaments, and the range of products has enabled a wide range of buyers to join this “religion of worship of beauty."

Signed works by artist Louis Comfort Tiffany: Stained Glass “Sacred City” and “Baptism of the Lord” (Brown Presbyterian Memorial Church, Baltimore), stained glass window"Education" (Chittenden Memorial Stained Glass Window, Yale University), mosaic "Garden of Dreams", lamp "Lotus leaf", lamp "Broom", lamp "Dragonfly".

Louis Comfort Tiffany was the first son of Harriet Young and Charles Lewis Tiffany, founder of jewelry company Tiffany & Co. Although in his youth he studied at the Pennsylvania Military Academy, his passion for art, undoubtedly inspired by his father's business, led him to become an artist. His first teacher was the landscape painter George Inness, after which Tiffany in 1866 entered the National Academy of Design in New York. The wealth of the family gave the young artist the opportunity to travel the world, absorbing the aesthetics of different cultures and peoples.

In 1872, Tiffany settled in New York and married Mary Woodbridge Goddard. The couple had three children. By this time, the artist was seriously engaged in the study of decorative art, most of all he liked glass, the manufacture of which he was interested in. In 1879, he created the Louis Comfort Tiffany and Associate American Artists group of artists, which included Candice Wheeler, Samuel Coleman, and Lockwood de Forest. Having joined forces in the implementation of unusual interior design projects, the group completed several orders over four years, including redevelopment of the interior of the Mark Twain House in Connecticut, as well as a redesign of the White House premises for President Chester Alan Arthur (1829 - 1886).

New ideas in glass production made Tiffany dissolve the group. In 1885, he organized his own company, Tiffany Glass Company (later Tiffany Studios). The artist created a new stained glass technique, replacing the coarse lead connecting pieces of glass with copper foil. This allowed us to achieve finer detail of the picture. Another direction is opalescent glass, in which several colors were combined, creating a new, volumetric effect of a stained glass pattern. New technologies, along with the passion for Art Nouveau, quickly made Tiffany a leader in the production of decorative glass interior items.

In 1884, Tiffany's wife, Mary Goddard, died. Two years later, he married again - with Louise Wakeman Knox, the Four children born in this marriage, the family was helped by the sisters and relatives of Tiffany, giving the artist the opportunity to continue his career. Together with the English glassblower Arthur Nash in 1893, Tiffany created another company, the Stourbridge Glass Company (later Tiffany Glass Furnaces). The result of numerous experiments was a new technique, patented under the brand name favrile (favril). Adding metal oxides to the molten glass, Tiffany achieved an unusual rainbow shine that exquisitely looked in blown glass products and in stained glass windows. Later “favril” began to designate all Tiffany's products from glass, enamel and ceramics. The artist carried out orders for churches, creating exquisite window stained-glass windows.

In the same 1893, Tiffany began production of his famous stained glass lamps, presenting the first copies at the World Exhibition in Chicago. He continued his experiments, carried away in 1898 by enamels, in 1900 - pottery, and in 1904 - the design of jewelry.

In 1902, after the death of his famous father, Tiffany became the first art director at Tiffany & Co, significantly expanding the company's range of decorative design products. Finally, he found time to complete his personal project - the Laurelton Hall House, located on Long Island, 84 of which rooms were decorated in modern style. The Tiffany brand became an icon of American Art Nouveau and remained so until the 1930s, when more restrained Art Deco and Bauhaus styles came into fashion. Sales plummeted, and Tiffany Studios filed for bankruptcy in 1932. This was a crushing blow for Tiffany. A year later, the artist died of pneumonia.

Following the principles of his idol, the founder of the Arts and Crafts movement William Morris, Tiffany made great efforts so that the representatives of different social classes around the world could enjoy the fruits of his work - and achieved success. Like his father, Louis was a gentleman of the Legion of Honor; he also became an honorary member of the National Society of Fine Arts (Paris) and the Imperial Society of Fine Arts (Tokyo). For his work, Tiffany received more than 50 prestigious awards and became one of the most famous and influential designers of his time.
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