News-Antique.com - May 12,2010 - During the 1890 to 1914 just prior to the Great War (It could not be called the First World War because history was unaware there was to be a second.) the Art Nouveau era began. This was a world art movement although it was called different names in each country, however the French new art or Art Nouveau was also used in America. During this period America was greatly influenced by but not dictated by the European culture America still remained fiercely independent. It was an outstandingly beautiful era in art and porcelain, with many naturalist intertwining organic forms of stems or flowers. We were just leaving the Victorian age with the overdone heavy dark look, and coming into a fresh era of love of nature, flowers, trees, sea and sky. Van Gogh had previously finished his sunflower painting in 1888 which was tremendously influential in all areas of art work. Van Gogh also did a lesser known but truly just as outstanding picture of Irises. Although many have tried no artist could replicate the appeal of Van Gogh’s flowers. His work and the colors are strong and vibrant. Nonetheless Van Gogh was tremendously influential in the Art Nouveau era of art and porcelain design although of course he had already passed away. Therefore many great porcelain artists applied the sun flowers in various designs and uses to enhance their ideas and influence. This vase not only uses the sunflower for its design but incorporates the purple irises. Note also the artist’s addition of gold leaves and stylized roots at the base of the vase as well as bringing many shadows and shadings into the vase to give an additional art nouveau concept. The handles; which although curving lines characterize Art Nouveau, right-angled forms are also typical as indicated by these outstanding handles. The colors are very bright and clear in this vase; the dark green background, the bright yellow in the sunflowers and the more shaded purple irises with gold trim. This vase was made by the Royal Worchester porcelain company in England at the turn of the century and would look great with new or antique surroundings.