L'École offers initiation courses with hands-on experiencing, on an "a la carte" basis, organized around three themes: the Savoir-Faire, the Art History of Jewelry and the Universe of Gemstones.
To offer the person of your choice a course, choose from the following four gift packages, ranging from 40 to 350 euros.
The person will be free to choose a course of his/her choice from the list of courses you have selected. The choice will be made when registrating online.
L'Ecole Van Cleef & Arpels offers a regularly scheduled program of evening conversations, from 8pm to 10pm. With this gift certificate, offer the chance to learn from and share with two experts on a particular topic.
This initiation course offers you a journey across the five continents in order to examine the jewel from a new point of view. The course is taught by a jewelry art historian and a gemologist.
What is a jewel? Why does it attract us? Each civilization, each time period has produced its own answers. From Africa to Oceania, passing through Asia, the Americas and Europe, this world tour in jewelry invites you to discover materials, techniques and styles which give the jewel its identity, from olden times to now.
Experience craftsmanship, discover how to create a high jewelry masterpiece. This class is conducted by a jeweler and a stone-setter – both with many years’ experience in Van Cleef & Arpels’ workshops – along with an instructor.
There is so much to discover about the creation of an iconic jewel. Above and beyond the value of the precious metal and the gemstones which go into the jewel, there is a summit of achievement reached together by all those who practice the savoir-faire of jewelry making. You will try out the jewelers’ gestures hands-on, and thus experience for yourself all the richness of these artistic professions, guided personally by the Master Jewelers.
Exploring the first steps in the creation of a jewel: from mock-up to design. This class is conducted by an experienced jewelry mock-up maker, a drawing teacher and an instructor.
Prerequisite: having taken the course "The Lapidary Art 1 - Discovery: history and gestures", to register for the course "The Lapidary Art 2".
Discover the history of stone cutting and the principal techniques of the Lapidary. This course is taught by a lapidary and a gemologist. You will discover the history, the geography, the vocabulary and the tools used to cut and polish colored stones. You will understand also how the Lapidary studies a rough stone in order to decide the best way to cut it, to obtain the very best color, while also retaining the best weight of the stone. Finally, you will proceed to the first steps for cutting: you will use the cutting machine and you will execute lapidary techniques. You will leave with your pre-formed or “bruted” stone.
Prerequisite: having taken the course "The Lapidary Art 1 - Discovery: history and gestures".
Cutting your own stone. Applying the techniques you learned during the course « The Lapidary’s Art 1 ». This course is taught by a lapidary and a gemologist.
You will first become acquainted with the major principles of cutting and the importance of proportions. Then you will cut your own stone until completion. Step by step, you will make the facets and polish them using the lapidary’s cutting and polishing machine. At the end of this course, you will leave with the fruit of your labor: your facetted stone.
Immerse yourself into two magnificent arts and crafts traditions. This class is conducted by a master of Japanese Urushi lacquer instructor and a jeweler with many years’ experience in Van Cleef & Arpels’ workshops.
Two Savoir-Faire: French Jewelry & Japanese Urushi Lacquer. At the jeweler’s bench, you work with metal & vegetable ivory to create motifs on a butterfly jewel. In the lacquer workshop, using tools and materials from far away, you create your lacquered butterfly, praticing three of the lacquer master’s ancestral techniques: placing colors, Maki-e, mosaics in mother of pearl.
Discover the subtlety of applying the enameling art to a jewel. This class is conducted by master enameler, along with an instructor.
Enamel has existed since the invention of glass in ancient times. Accompanied by a master enameler, you will practice engraving the metal, crushing the enamel’s ingredients and then creating your own butterfly in champlevé and in plique à jour enamel. Cooking your enamel work at very high temperature in the specialized oven will show you how and why this is called : « the art of ‘grand feu’ », because it is the fire, omnipresent in the enameler’s work, which fuses and transforms the material in order to reveal the color.
In jewelry, creation is the result of a team effort, for which the design is the first step. The gouaché is a detailed rendering which will guide all the different « hands » who will participate in thecreation of the jewel. The mockup maker, the jewelers, the gemologists, the polishers, the setters: all will refer back to it during every single stage. The gouaché prefigures the jewel, both in volume and in color. The jewel is a 3 dimensional object in volume, for which the design is flat, 2 dimensional. In this course, you will learn how to master showing these volumes for a white gold jewel, and how to create a subtle play of lights and shadows, using your gouache paint and brushes.
In jewelry, creation is the result of a team effort, for which the design is the first step. The gouaché is a detailed rendering which will guide all the different « hands » who will participate in the creation of the jewel. The mockup maker, the jewelers, the gemologists, the polishers, the setters: all will refer back to it during every single stage. The gouaché prefigures the jewel, both in volume and in color. In this course you will discover how the designer must perfectly express the association of color with light. From cabochon shape to faceted cuts, you will apply the techniques for gouaché which show the liveliness of the real stones.
Pharaohs, emperors of Rome and Byzantium, princes of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance; the great and powerful all used gold as a symbol of their power.
From the techniques of casting and repoussé to chasing and granulation, the talent of goldsmiths is a testament to the epic story of gold.
From Louis XIV to Art Déco, punctuated by extraordinary discoveries, the history of jewelry is marked by great creators.
After a retrospective journey and a presentation of the most famous jewelers, from Baroque to Art Déco, from the gems and precious metals to the most innovative materials, experience for yourself the blossoming of modern jewelry.
To discover how jewels evolved across the ages from Antiquity to the Renaissance, you can take part in the course "Gold & Jewelry, from Antiquity to the Renaissance Princes".
Discover how Art Nouveau revitalized jewelers' art. This class is conducted by two art historians.
A splendid time for artistic creation, Art Nouveau identified the jewel as a work of art. Let’s decipher and interpret together the style of this period of tumultuous change: the « Belle Epoque »! To go further and to conclude our exploration we will visit the « Jewelry Gallery » inside the Museum of Decorative Art in order to enjoy major pieces of Art Nouveau jewelry.
True personal companions, talismanic jewels usher us into a poetic world governed by nature, the stars and the hopes of humanity. This class is conducted by two art historians.
You will discover the symbolic meaning of precious, fine and ornamental gemstones and how people find inspiration and strength for themselves in them. You will learn that every culture has its own emblematic images, and even stones. These legends and beliefs have fascinated people through time and all around the planet: from the Mughal emperors to Napoleon, from Catherine de Medici to Elizabeth Taylor, among countless others.
Learn how to read the gemstones of the world. Let your emotions speak and be won over by an interest in stones. This class is conducted by a gemologist and an instructor.
Become a knowledgeable connoisseur of gemstones by training your eye and discovering the tools of the gemologist. This class is conducted by a gemologist and an instructor.
Two courses dedicated to the diamond to give a panoramic view of the state of knowledge about the « Stone of Stones ». This class is conducted by a gemologist and an art historian.
Two courses which offer you a panoramic view of the up-to-date state of knowledge about the « Stone of Stones » : the diamond. This class is conducted by a gemologist and an instructor.
Be initiated into the latest advances in chemistry, geology, physics…and follow the evolution of technologies which give us insight into why the diamond so invincible and so fascinating. You will discover the secrets of this gemstone: its chemical composition, totally improbable birth, unequalled hardness. The mystery of its brilliance and its fire... You will handle stones, use gemologist’s tools, look at exclusive documents.
Discover the Ruby: this miraculous stone, which, according to the Burmese legend, carries the fire and the blood of the Earth itself. This course is given by two expert gemologists.
After having contemplated the unique symbolism of the color red, you will then start studying where this legendary is found, the places around the world where it is extracted. You will also understand the fascinating and particular properties, which have made ruby the « Queen of Precious Stones » in many civilizations.
Visiting the workshop, discussing with the craftsmen and the designers, sharpening one’s eye on exceptional pieces... This class is conducted by an experienced instructor and a Van Cleef & Arpels jewelry designer.
Experience the Universe of Van Cleef & Arpels by entering into the very heart of the Maison. You will follow each step in the crafting of the jewels, by visiting Van Cleef & Arpels' High Jewelry workshop and meeting its skilled craftsmen —the “Mains d'Or™”.