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Art Nouveau in Riga represents European architecture at its best. Art NouveauArt Nouveau appeared in Riga at the same time as it did in the rest of the world. Hundreds of local artists went to work and created an outstanding, very important and inviolable component of pan-European culture.

During the Art Nouveau period, Riga was a special city – a wealthy port town, a center for transit trade, a city where factories put out airplanes, train cars, bicycles and automobiles. It was a center for porcelain production, and it was home to some of the most distinguished scientists and educators of the day.

Riga was a German, Russian and Latvian city. Art Nouveau in Riga reflects the influences of German, Austrian and Finnish architects and designers. Indeed, Art Nouveau can be found in all of its highly varied glory in Riga. Then city of the Russian Empire, Riga saw architects of three nationalities working with three different groups of clients. Indeed, at the turn of the 19th century, Riga was a place where architects fiercely competed with one another.

To see photos of ART NOUVEAU architecture

There in no other city in Europe which can compare to Riga in terms of the number of Art Nouveau buildings. In Riga, more than one-third of the buildings in the city center are Art Nouveau in style. In terms of the compact nature of these treasures and off the great artistic quality of the buildings that can be seen, Riga is a true Art Nouveau metropolis.

Art Nouveau dominates the architecture of the part of theArt Nouveau architecture Riga city center which surround Old Riga and the so-called ring of boulevards. The pearl of Art Nouveau in Riga is Alberta Street and its surrounding streets (Vilandes, Elizabetes, Strelnieku and Antonijas street). Here the visitors will see the most brilliant aspects of the decorative style which Art Nouveau was. Several important buildings have been lovingly restored over the last few years, and that makes the tempting nature of the style very evident, indeed. This is an area of Riga which has a particular aura because of the diversity of monuments to Art Nouveau, the exclusivity of the buildings which were up in that style, and the fact that the Art Nouveau zone is right next to the city’s zone of parks and greenery.
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