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Art Deco


The fashionable style of the Jazz age between the World Wars, concurrent with the International Style of the Modern Movement. The machine aesthetic is mimicry of, rather than metaphor for, functionalism. Hence streamlined contours and ship-architecture motifs are incorporated for effect, with decorative devices having cubist lines. The rise in popularity of the apartment block for fashionable city dwellers and the movie theatres for their entertainment and petrol stations for their cars provided the building types bearing this styling, for example Union Castle Building (1937-9, Johannesburg; architects JA MOFFAT & TN DUNCAN), Normandie Court (1937-8, Johannesburg; architects GRINKER & SKELLY).