Who is this site for?
This site is for Art Nouveau (hereinafter AN) aficionados like me who can’t miss an AN building or exhibition in any city they come to for business or leisure.
If you have no idea of what I am talking about, please don’t leave just yet – take a tour of some Art Nouveau masterpieces right here, or read up on Art Nouveau in Wikipedia and hopefully become one of us!
What is this site?
This site is a cross-referenced geo-tagged database of AN-related places in the world - like AN buildings, museums exposing AN works in their collections, restaurants and hotels featuring AN interiors, exhibitions related to AN in any way. You can use it to plan your travels, take virtual AN walks in the cities you are not planning to visit any time soon or you can use it on your smart phone or tablet to figure out what objects of interest are near you and how to reach them. Last but not least - you can (and are encouraged to!) add missing AN buildings or other objects in your own city or any city you know well.
All artefacts are assigned to "categories". Of most practical importance are:
- museums: you can walk in and see some AN exhibits on permanent display. The museum building itself is not necessarily a masterpiece of AN architecture (see "Year built" or lack thereof if irrelevant to AN).
- hotels: you can stay there and enjoy AN interiors. Do not mark former hotels as "hotels".
- restaurants/bars/cafes: you can have a drink/meal in an AN setting. Contemporary AN-inspired interiors also count but should be noted in the "Year built" as "contemporary".
You can check opening hours, contact info etc. of the above by clicking on the Google Place marker for the venue which should be somewhere very close to the artefact marker on the map and then on "View on Google Maps".
Other categories like "house", "apartment building", "station" or "church" simply give you an idea of what kind of an artefact to expect. Churches and stations are usually visitable with no reservations, private houses and apartments usually are not - use your common sense.
To make sure that the most important artefacts are not lost in the sea of less important ones, especially in the cities with a large AN heritage, a system of "ratings" is in place. The most important artefacts ("must-sees") are marked with gold markers, less important with silver markers and marginally interesting ("might want to take a look if you are around anyway") with bronze markers. A black marker means the artefact has been destroyed and is on the map for reference only - you can see the archive pictures/drawings to get a more complete idea of an artist's body of work but it doesn't make any sense to travel to that spot anymore.
The object rating is NOT subject to user voting: it’s originally assigned by the contributor and in exceptional cases can be corrected by the editor.
Using Google Street View/See Inside panoramas
In the bottom part of every artefact card you will see a thumbnail for a Google Street View for that particular place. Clicking on the thumbnail opens a full screen panorama that will allow you to virtually "walk" around the artefact by clicking on white arrows, zoom into details etc.
The "street views" are not necessarily shot in the street, for some artefacts there are quality panoramas of interiors available ("See Inside"). If you find yourself inside a multi-storey building and wonder what's on another floor, look for a stack of squares with numbers in the lower-right corner of the screen: clicking on those numbers will bring you to other floors like an elevator (if the current panorama has been shot with that option).
If you see "Sorry, we have no imagery here" instead of a Street view thumbnail, try clicking on it anyway: the Google databases of thumbnails and actual panoramas are not always synchronized and there might be a panorama where there's no thumbnail. If this doesn't work then it means there are no panoramas available for that spot: either because Google hasn't got around to it yet or because the particular country considers it illegal (like Austria).
If you are not happy with what you see on the panorama and see no arrows to navigate, this often means that a google user has uploaded another panorama (often misplaced and of low quality) and placed it closer to the artefact placemark than the previous one, carefully selected when the artefact was added to the map. In this case try different panoramas by dragging the yellow guy from the right side of the map to various points around the artefact and see what happens. If the "default" panorama is particularly sad and there's a better choice, please contact us and we will fix it.
May I copy pictures from this site to my own site/blog/facebook page?
Pictures posted on this site belong to many different people and are published under many different licenses. You can see the copyright notice in the upper left corner of the screen when you open the picture full screen. If the license type is not specifically stated right in the copyright notice (like “All rights reserved”) you should click on the copyright notice and visit the source of the picture, which usually contains licensing terms for that specific picture or all pictures coming from a blog/site/author etc. You should read the license terms carefully and verify whether your planned usage conforms to the license terms. If there are no clear license terms or if the author explicitly reserves all rights to the picture, you should contact the author directly and ask for permission (like we did before publishing their pictures here).
Why do I not see on your web site any Art Nouveau buildings I know of in my own city?
Because you have not added them yet! You can add them right now and make your city known to AN aficionados all over the world.
You can add any AN-related place to the map. To be able to do this, you need to create a user account first (click on “Register” in the upper right corner and follow the instructions). You only need to register if you are about to contribute something, otherwise registration gives no benefits or added features.
To add an artefact click on the button in the top left corner of the map. A new page will open. Find the desired location on the map and click on it. Make sure Google has guessed the street address, city and country correctly - sometimes it doesn't. The most important is the city name: make sure the field contains the correct English name of the right city as it is used elsewhere on the site, otherwise a new city will be created and your artefact will wind up there wreaking havoc and confusion!
When adding an artefact, give it a rating of 3 for the gold marker, 2 for the silver one, 1 for the bronze one, 0 for the black one and -1 for the gray one. Destroyed artefacts must have the "Year destroyed" field filled in, at least approximately - "1960s" will do. Unrealized projects must have both "Year built" and "Year destroyed" blank.
As a rule of thumb, the must-sees should constitute around 5-15% of all artefacts in a large city. Having 50 must-sees in a city of a 100 AN artefacts doesn't really help to figure out what to see if only in town for a day or two.
Making sure the artefact you add gets a nice Street View
When you add an artefact, a good starting point for the placemark is the center of the building as you see it on the map. After you are done with the artefact form and save it, check what kind of Street View it gets. If you don't particularly like what you see, for example you get a view of the building's blank firewall from the side alley instead of the facade, or the inside of a shoe store next door, or a misplaced and fuzzy user-supplied panorama of God knows what, try to go to the Edit mode (click on the pencil icon in the artefact card upper right corner, then Edit) and try moving the placemark around within the building or even a little beyond to see what you get.
We will always choose the nearest panorama to the placemark. The available panoramas (blue lines or blue or orange points) become visible when you start dragging the yellow guy over the map. Before moving the placemark you can try dragging the yellow guy to see what panoramas are available at all, this will help you make more educated guesses on where to put the artefact placemark.
If you know the name(s) of the artist(s) who created the artefact you are adding, just start typing the name into the Artist field. The site will suggest matching names of the artists it already knows. If the name is yet unknown to us, check the spelling once again and when you submit the artefact a new artist record will be created. You can go to that record later and add any extra info you know about the artist such as years of life and a photo.
Don’t forget to select the role(s) of the artist in creating of the artefact – “architect”, “sculptor” etc. in the "Speciality" field. If the architect both built the house and designed its interiors, don’t check “interiors” – it’s reserved for the cases when the artist was only responsible for the interiors and was not involved in building or rebuilding the artefact.
If there’s more than one artist involved in creating the artefact just click on “Add another item” to get another set of Artist fields.
You can add your pictures to any artefact, not only to those added by yourself. You add pictures by clicking on the “pencil” button in the upper right corner of the artefact card and then selecting "Add picture".
Make sure the pictures you are adding were taken by yourself to avoid any copyright infringement. Every picture you add will be clearly marked as added by you. If you have pictures not taken by you but you are sure the copyright holder won’t mind please contact us via e-mail. By posting pictures here you give permission to this web site to store and display the pictures you have posted (with your copyright notice) indefinitely.
Using picture tags
When adding pictures you can (and should) add tags to them so that your picture could be found when searching for a specific tag/keyword like "door" or "metalwork" or "owl". You can see what tags are available and popular if you look at the Tag cloud tab in the right side bar of the home page. It's important to understand that tags are linked to the picture and NOT to the artefact and you shouldn't duplicate as tags any artefact attributes already stored in dedicated fields like country, city, architect, date of construction etc.
Only about a hundred most popular tags are shown in the Tag cloud. If you are looking for something you don't see there (like "mouse") you can still try searching for it using the Search box: if at least one picture was tagged with "mouse" it will be found.
You will be able to see your own contributions on the site immediately, other users will only see them after they are approved by the editor to prevent abuse.
Will all my contributions be published?
Any verifiable artefacts relevant to AN that are not duplicates of already posted artefacts will be published. All pictures of decent quality relevant to AN artefacts will be published if they add value: i.e. unless a better picture of the same feature or taken from roughly the same angle already exists. The only picture of a newly added artefact is likely to be published even if its quality is not very good. Another iPhone take on Casa Batlló or the marble staircase in Ryabushinsky House is unlikely to be published.
Over time, some pictures can be replaced by new higher quality pictures of the same artefact/feature, that's why it's not a good idea to consider this site as a permanent photo hosting service for your pictures.