In 1935, the Belgian architect Louis Tenaerts designed the stunning Art Deco façade of a building located on Avenue Coghen 28 in Uccle, a suburban district of Brussels. This remarkable piece of architecture is a testament to the Art Deco movement that flourished during the early 20th century. In this article, we will delve into the specificities of the Art Deco movement in architecture and explore the unique features of Tenaerts’ façade.
The Art Deco movement emerged in France just before World War I and reached its zenith in the 1920s and 1930s. The style was characterized by a modernist approach, a focus on luxury and glamour, and a blend of different artistic and cultural influences. Art Deco architects and designers drew inspiration from a wide range of sources, such as ancient Egyptian, African, and Asian art, as well as from the visual language of the Machine Age and the streamlined shapes of aerodynamics.
In architecture, Art Deco emphasized verticality, symmetry, and the use of new materials, such as concrete, glass, and steel. The movement rejected the ornate and intricate designs of the past in favor of clean lines, geometric shapes, and bold colors. Art Deco buildings often featured decorative motifs such as sunbursts, zigzags, and chevrons, as well as stylized flora and fauna. The façades of Art Deco buildings were often adorned with elaborate bas-reliefs, sculptural elements, and murals.
The façade of the building on Avenue Coghen 28 is a prime example of Art Deco architecture. Tenaerts’ design features a strong emphasis on verticality, with a central tower that rises above the rest of the building. The tower is flanked by two smaller towers. The façade is topped by a decorative element above the terrace made of planks, creating a sense of symmetry and balance. This building stands as a testament to the enduring appeal of Art Deco architecture and its impact on modern design.