Category: art nouveau

As a reaction against the rigidity of Austrian neoclassicism, a lighter,  decorative style arose during the 1890s, based on organic patterns, natural textures, and spiritual symbolism. Also known as ‘Secessionist’ or ‘Jungendstil’, art nouveau is most associated with the Moravian-born artist Alfons Mucha, whose work came to dominate the scene in Paris and Prague.

Mickiewiczova 233/1: Villa Bílek

From the 1720s to 1890s, Prague’s castle district was surrounded by a defensive wall, punctuated at intervals by gates and bastions. However, the so-called Marian ramparts proved to be of limited military use, so between 1898 and 1903...

New City Hall (Nová radnice)

New City Hall (Nová radnice) — not to be confused with the mediaeval New Town Hall (Novoměstská radnice) — was built between 1908 and 1912 according to a design by Osvald Polívka. At first, the new building acted...

Na Příkopě 391/7: U Dörflerů

Na Příkopě 391/7: U Dörflerů

The commercial and residential building U Dörflerů was built in 1905 by the firm of Matěj Blecha. Occupying a prime location near the lower end of Wenceslas Square, its decorative facade is the perfect example of art nouveau...

Křižovnická 61/12: U Dvou štítů

Křižovnická 61/12: U Dvou štítů

The name František Sander is principally connected with the architecture of navigable waterways, particularly the Elbe and the Vltava, in the early part of the 20th century. He was responsible for the impressive Vltava embankment of 1904 running...

Jindřišská 909/14: Main Post Office

Jindřišská 909/14: Main Post Office

Postal services in Bohemia started in 1526, when mounted couriers made the first deliveries between Prague and Vienna, the twin seats of the Habsburgs. But it was not until the reign of Maria Theresa in the 18th century...

Moskevská 77/4

Moskevská 77/4

Of the many celebrated Czech architects of the first decade of the twentieth century, perhaps the most prolific was the Austrian-born Osvald Polívka. Best known for civic projects such as Prague’s new City Hall (1911) and Municipal House...

Basilica of SS. Peter and Paul, Vyšehrad

Statue of Libuše and Přemysl, Vyšehrad

Přemysl and Libuše, Josef Myslbek, 1897 (copy) In the peaceful grounds of the ancient fort of Vyšehrad stand four monumental statues by Josef Myslbek depicting characters from early Czech mythology. One shows an allegorical couple, ‘Lumír and Piseň’...

Na Švihance 1588/12 and 1569/14

Na Švihance 1588/12 and 1569/14

These fine art nouveau apartments on the border of the Vinohrady and Žižkov districts date from 1910; they were built by Antonín Polívka to a design by the architect Josef Pospíšil. Seven years earlier, Pospíšil had made his...

Tolstého 522/11 and 523/13

Tolstého 522/11 and 523/13

The ornate Parisian-style apartment blocks of Kodaňská Street and its immediate neighbourhood are some of the most impressive domestic houses in Prague. But even those not facing directly onto that grand boulevard still have a distinctiveness and charm...

Na Petynce 395/41

Na Petynce 395/41

Caught between two highways that sweep westwards to Prague airport, the suburbs of Střešovice and Břevnov retain a curiously quiet, semi-rural atmosphere. On their slopes can still be found the traces of numerous baroque farmsteads and estates; one...