An elaborately ornamental style of interior design, architecture, sculpture, painting and decorative arts popular in 18th-century Europe. The Rococo style is characterized by delicacy, elegance, and the exuberant use of curving forms. It originated in Paris in the early 18th century and later spread throughout France and to Central Europe, Italy, Russia, Spain, Portugal and Central and South America. The word Rococo is derived from the French word rocaille, which refers to  the shell and rock incrustation that was used to decorate artificial grottoes.