It all started in Italy, where churches were designed to convey a sense of awe in churchgoers. From the architecture to the art and even the music played during services, everything was designed to provoke an emotional reaction through sensory overload. This style rapidly spread through Catholic Europe, from Spain to Poland.
'Baroque' is a French word originating from the Latin 'Baroco', which in the 16th century, meant complex, bizarre, and uselessly complicated. After churches, the royals and aristocrats adopted the style and incorporated the aesthetics in palaces' architecture, furniture, tapestries, paintings, tableware, and of course fashion. What began in the court of Versailles, quickly traveled to Imperial Russia, and as a result of colonialism and the spread of Christianity, to the Philippines, India, and Peru. Baroque was the first truly global trend and the most impactful marketing campaign at the time. After its golden years, Baroque fell out of style – it was ridiculed and perceived as bad taste, soon supplanted by Classicism.