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Views of Albion

The Reception of British Art and Design in Central Europe, 1890–1918


Andrzej Szczerski

Views of Albion is the first comprehensive study of the reception of British art and design in Central Europe at the turn of the twentieth century. The author proposes a new map of European Art Nouveau, where direct contacts between peripheral cultures were more significant than the influence of Paris. These new patterns of artistic exchange, often without historic precedence, gave art during this period its unique character and dynamism.
Beginning with an analysis of the concept of Central Europe, the book examines knowledge about British art and design in the region. In subsequent chapters the author looks at the reception of the Pre-Raphaelites in painting and graphic arts as well as analysing diverse responses to the Arts and Crafts Movement in Germany, Austria, Poland, Bohemia, Slovakia, Hungary and Southern Slavic countries. The epilogue reveals the British interest in Central Europe, echoed in the designs Walter Crane, Charles Robert Ashbee and publications of The Studio.
The book questions the insularity of British culture and offers new insights into art and design of Central Europe at the fin de siècle. It presents the region as a vital part of the international Art Nouveau, but also shows its specific features, visible in the works of artists such as Alfons Mucha, Gustav Klimt and Stanisław Wyspiański.
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Edited by Grace Brockington

Internationalism and the Arts at the Fin de Siècle is a multidisciplinary series that explores cosmopolitan practices and processes of cultural exchange across national boundaries at a crucial historical moment. The period from the late nineteenth century to the early twentieth century was characterized by national consolidation, empire building and catastrophic conflict. As part of the same process of collective encounter and self-definition, this time was also marked by international cooperation, proposals for world government, and transnational communities that challenged the nation state. The arts were central to the formation of national identities, and cultural practitioners (artists, writers, musicians, dramatists) were expected to shore up national traditions. Yet their lives were often cosmopolitan and their practices shaped by cross-cultural collaboration.

The series provides a forum for scholars working in the emerging area of cultural internationalism. It challenges the emphasis on national schools as the foundation of scholarly analysis, and it draws attention to the vigour of internationalist art and ideology in an age that is more frequently remembered for jingoism and war. The series is affiliated with the ICE research network (Internationalism and Cultural Exchange, 1870–1920; Proposals for monographs, edited collections and anthologies of primary sources will be considered.

For more information, please contact either the series editor, Dr Brockington (, or the publisher (

Published Volumes

Andrzej Szczerski:...

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