City Objects


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In the urban life of this period, which was short in time but represented an in-depth transformation, the shops in the Old Quarter of Bilbao and those that would later extend towards Bilbao’s new “Ensanche” were characterised by their diversification and increase in new articles.

The traditional shops and craftsmen sold new mass-produced articles and the offer increased dramatically. All the products and services offered were aimed at new modern model that would end up changing the appearance of people and their homes.

The introduction of Modernity took over in the home. You could buy new articles in all shops, but only the upper class was able to afford quality products. Printed wallpaper, curtains made with the finest linen, lamps, rugs, decorative objects, etc., all of which were a sign of distinction in this period, clearly influenced by the new objects and fashion that arrived from Europe and, in fact, many of these articles were brought from there.

The Belle Époque represented the transformation towards the market economy, which would lead to a system of mass consumption.

The many European artistic and decorative styles which were developing and represented Art-Nouveau also inspired industry and craftsmen of this period, who went on to create furniture, tools, clothes, etc. under this new aesthetic pattern. A high level of specialisation and meticulous work was needed to elaborate decorative details in all kinds of materials, which would bring about new professions.  Dressmakers, shoe designers, carpenters, metalworkers, jewellers, etc. created a large number of objects, putting in endless hours of work. At times, the aesthetic standards of these objects were more important than practicality.

  • Los motivos florales y relacionados con la naturaleza dominaban en la decoración

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