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Secessionist Movement By Johnson, Michael

DOI: 10.4324/9781135000356-REM1765-1
Published: 01/10/2017
Retrieved: 19 June 2024, from


The Secessionist Movement is the name applied to a range of artistic splinter groups that began to emerge in the 1890s. Objecting to what they saw as the inherent conservatism of established academies, these groups ‘seceded’ or broke away from their parent institutions and launched their own, avant-garde approach. The first secessionist group appeared in Munich in 1892 under the leadership of Franz von Stuck and Wilhelm Trübner.

Among the most influential secessionist groups was that founded in Vienna by a coalition of artists, architects and designers who resigned from the Association of Austrian Artists in 1897. United by the urge to elevate the applied arts to the status of fine art, members of the Vienna Secession produced exquisite work across a spectrum of creative disciplines. The aesthetic initially resembled the curvilinear Art Nouveau style, but it increasingly moved towards abstraction and geometric simplicity. The founding of the Vienna Secession thus marked the beginning of a new artistic era in Austria and heralded the birth of the Modern Movement.

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Johnson, Michael. Secessionist Movement. Routledge Encyclopedia of Modernism, Taylor and Francis,

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