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De Stijl Design Movement: An Overview

An artistic movement called De Stijl was a design style founded in the distant past. Its influence was arguably noticed since World War I. De Stijl is based in the Netherlands and significantly grows over time.

De stijl has been known since the early 20th century in the Netherlands. This movement began to spread with what was referred to as Neoplasticism and Neopositivism influences. To this end, it still works on today’s graphic designs.

de stijl


De Stijl and Characteristics

Most types of arts always have quite a long history and are generally associated with the period they were created. Like many others, this movement emerged and kept people occupied while the world was in a state of war.

Regardless of how old school the time was, De Stijl has showcased formidable and more advanced features than the time they were in. This movement has been adapted to a wide range of needs. So, let’s define its characteristics to pave your way.

Straight Lines

This art movement was famous for featuring straight lines. The lines were drawn to create a symmetrical shape. In other words, it makes a well-organized yet meaningful design.

De Stijl should only be done in a meticulous and cautious way. The results, which consisted of coherent lines, fit with what was happening at that time. Everything was so chaotic during World War I and arts were meant to make a precise design.

Eventhough the time has develop different art styles, the ideas of order in art is still dwelling among today’s designs with no changes in their traits. People start switching their preference to asymmetrical or out-of-order designs for some reason.

Nonetheless, De Stijl remains meaningful for people who love harmony. This art movement performs constant progress without changing their characteristics since it was promoted till today.        

Right Angles

The design industry includes various types of angles. You can start recognizing each design has a different angle to have a better understanding of design. It is one of design’s characteristics which to some extent differentiates one design from another.

Employing right angles is the second trait of De Stijl. It has an angle of 90° that reflects a coherent, perfect and neat result.

This angles’ characteristic relates to what straight lines have in this type. In design, every line is closely associated with angles which correspond to the desired shapes. There is no reason not to know about this.

When this movement’s main characteristic is drawing straight lines in order, the appropriate angle to use is right angles. It makes no sense to have obtuse angles for straight lines.     

Modern and Abstract Styles

De Stijl also promotes modern impressions. Compared to the past when everything was old-fashioned, somehow their artist’s imagination goes beyond ordinary. The ideas of modern style continue to be progressing today.

The modern style comes from very well-ordered arts. People, who were psychologically sick of the war, believe that neat and orderly designs have a transformative effect.

This movement, too, promotes abstract and short impressions. Today’s arts dare to play with any colors and shapes, while those elements were carefully made back then.

That makes De Stijl known as an abstract design, making it one of their characteristics. In fact, this style means more for the abstract enthusiasts.     


De Stijl design was seen as modern and abstract which portray simplicity. Designers made only well-ordered forms, created by straight lines to deconstruct symmetrical forms.

The impression we get by observing today’s design concept is completely different from that which belongs to the past. Ultimately, design’s continuing progress along the years creates new design flows that are against the traditional art rules, yet still meaningful and acceptable.

Simplicity hardly comes from design that bends the rules. If you favor modest impressions more, this style would serve you best.

De Stijl also had a big influence over the audiences by portraying the simplicity. It was no surprise when people started giving big reactions and contributions from the day this movement was being introduced.     

Mostly on Paintings

In the ancient time, artworks were frequently sending horror vibes which arise from human and carved statues paintings. There weren’t any paintings that delivered a different atmosphere.

Therefore, De Stijl is often applied to the work of paintings in an effort to have some with symmetrical forms. This movement continues to be referenced widely throughout paintings. 

Some business fields even have modern and abstract styles to their advantages. By employing straight lines or right angles on their products. This style could also work on your business purposes, home design and others. 

Primary Colors

Finally, De Stijl is famous for its primary colors. There could be more than one color in a painting but they don’t contrast with each other. While each shape could have different colors from the rest, such as red, yellow and more.


This art movement still continues to develop, even today. Studying types of designs and its features would give you more insight, ideas or references in dealing with design projects. Starting from De Stijl and all about.

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