Jugendstil. It was a fancy name for the apparatus that turned out homemade hooch on granpappy's farm. The 'Jug end' was the most important part, to be sure. The corn mash went in, magic happened, and pure moonshine came out.

How granpappy came up with a German 'art nouveau' name for his still is a mystery. Grandma liked to buy glossy magazines in the city, and maybe something highbrow she'd brought home ended up in the privy one fine day.

He ran that still in the barn for many years. Sometimes a part wore out, but as far as I can remember, the basic design never changed. The thing had a rube goldberg look that fascinated me - though I was in my teens before I learned it wasn't really making a fuel additive for the combines.

Granpappy died while I was away at college. When I came home that summer, the barn was gone. I don't know what happened to the Jugendstil. I like to think it's in some other barn to this day, still making fuel additive to warm the harvest season nights.

(Nodeshell challenge)

Jugendstil literally means "youth style". It's the German name for a movement among artists that was strongest at the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th. Nearly all kinds of art were influenced by it: painting, sculpting, architecture and even literature.

The root of Jugendstil was the increasing prevalence of industrialization in everyday life. Traditional art seemed unsuited to deal with in. Jugendstil artists wanted to bring back nature into industrialized life (by using plant and animal motives), and mysticism was also popular. Some of them, especially the architects, tried to "reconcile" art and everyday life by creating entire houses or useful items (such as lamps or chairs) as artworks.

Important Jugendstil artists were Gustav Klimt, Josef Maria Olbrich, Antonio Gaudi, Emile Galle, Henry van de Velde, Victor Horta.

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