The Four Seasons: Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter; 1896, Alphonse Maria Mucha
This was Mucha’s first set of decorative panels and it became one of his most popular series. It was so popular that Mucha was asked by Champenois to produce at least two more sets based on the same theme in 1897 and 1900. Designs for a further two sets also exist.
The idea of personifying the seasons was nothing new - examples could be found in the works of the Old Masters’ as well as in Champenois’s other publications. However, Mucha’s nymph-like women set against the seasonal views of the countryside breathed new life into the classic theme. In the four panels shown here, Mucha captures the moods of the seasons - innocent Spring, sultry Summer, fruitful Autumn and frosty Winter, and together they represent the harmonious cycle of Nature.