Cockerel, hens and chicks in a refined Art Deco woodwork representation

Art Deco style woodwork panel dating from the late-1930s on a doorway pediment, representing a cockerel, hens and chicks symbolising the family inhabiting that house and its domestic peace. Dorobanti area, Bucharest. (©Valentin Mandache)

The house hosting the exquisite Art Deco panel presented here dates from the late-1930s, displaying a mixture of styles on an Alpine chalet theme, a design popular at that time in countries that came under strong German influence, as was the case of Romania. The Alpine themes in architecture were very much favoured by the German national-socialist government against the Bauhaus and International Modernist styles that flourished before their ascension to power. In Romania that type of design was perceived as originating from a more advanced and prestigious cultural environment and did not have outright political connotations as in Germany. This particular house also contains Neo-Romanian motifs (the doorway awning ornaments, the ethnographic patterns carved on the window pillars, etc.) or even Art Deco, where the most conspicuous element is the panel from the above photograph. I like the cheerfulness and high abstraction of the design and the somehow amusing hint that the man in the house had two female partners (the official wife and the mistress).

A late-1930s Alpine chalet style house embellished with an Art Deco woodwork panel on the doorway pediment representing a cockerel's family. Dorobanti area, Bucharest. (©Valentin Mandache)


I endeavor through this series of daily articles to inspire appreciation of the historic houses of Romania, a virtually undiscovered, but fascinating chapter of European architectural history and heritage.


If you plan acquiring a historic property in Romania or start a renovation project, I would be delighted to advice you in sourcing the property, specialist research, planning permissions, restoration project management, etc. To discuss your particular plan please see my contact details in the Contact page of this weblog.

2 thoughts on “Cockerel, hens and chicks in a refined Art Deco woodwork representation

  • *Falls over* OH MY GOD THAT IS SO AMAZING! I’ve seen plenty of chicken motifs and plenty of Art Deco stuff, but I never thought I’d see them combined… and it works so well! The chicks are my favourites; they look like little soldiers. XD

    And then the house looks as if it should be in the mountains somewhere and it’s in Bucuresti. You find such weird and wonderful tthings!


    • The Alpine architecture was very popular in 1930s Romania; apart from the German architectural influence, there were much watched winter theme films/ movies with Sonia Heine or Leni Reifenshal and many people wanted to recreate those the ethos of those scenes into the architecture of their houses… Valentin M.


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