International Exhibition of Modern Decorative and Industrial Arts, Paris 1925

Modern Decorative and Industrial Arts

April 28, 1925 - October 25, 1925


Planned as early as 1906, postponed several times, the international exhibition opened in April 1925, delayed by the first "industrialised" world war.

Decorators wanted to organise this exhibition with the aim of reacting against the 1900 style (Art Nouveau), and this exhibition thus saw two currents clash, both influenced to a greater or lesser extent by Fauvism, the Ballets Russes, Negro art, Cubism, etc.

The first trend, later called "Art Deco", was characterised by its taste for straight lines, modernist interpretation of natural forms, simplicity and elegance, and was aimed above all at a wealthy clientele. It was especially carried by Rulhmann and Mallet-Stevens.

The second trend was more concerned with social and technical realities and aimed at a symbiosis with industry, and was mainly carried by Le Corbusier.

With the exception of Germany, which had been excluded, and the United States, 21 foreign countries, mostly European, responded to the invitation.

The 1925 Exhibition, although not a showcase for the avant-garde, allowed artists representing this very French style to spread its aesthetic throughout the world.

Of all the French Exhibitions, the 1925 Exhibition had without doubt the greatest impact and influence in Europe, Japan, China and the United States.

It should also be noted that the Art Deco movement was not called that until the 1960s, in reference to the 1925 Exhibition.