The Easel

24th May 2022

Architecture or Jewelry? Josef Hoffmann’s Modern Brooches

The Vienna Werkstätte was dedicated to the decorative arts. Led by Hoffmann, a pioneering modernist architect, it aspired to create gesamtkunstwerk a ‘total work of art’. His jewellery combined Japanese “vegetal patterns” with a modern geometric aesthetic, seemingly contradictory elements that yielded designs “monumental in their minimalized architectural forms”. They anticipated both art deco and the later International Style. Images of other Hoffmann designs are here.