This little gallery of illustrations from Jugend Magazine features the work of J. R. Witzel, an artist who is little known in English. Published in the magazine from its very first year, Witzel's work exemplifies the curvilinear aspects of the Art Nouveau style. Whether in humor, charm, or political commentary, Witzel uses the curved line to fill the frame in clever ways.
I discovered Witzel in the image of a woman starled by a shadow couple that invites the viewer to invent a caption or even an entire story. Then found L'Affaiire Dreyfus (the second image here). At the time, in 1896, when this was published, it had just been revealed that the French government had suppressed evidence that exonerated Alfred Dreyfus. Justice is pictured as a woman bound from every angle.When you look closely at the image of the woman in the pink dress and the little girl, you find faces peering out of the letters that spell Jugend and an attention to detail that never appears fussy.
Images: J. R. Witzel, from the Library of the Univeristy of Heidelberg, Germany.