Past Exhibition

Exhibition "Designing Jewels" (Paris)

Paris, France 14.10.2021 — 14.02.2022
René Lalique (1860-1945) « Hortensias »

L'École des Arts Joailliers

31 rue Danielle Casanova
75001 Paris

From October 14th 2021 to February 14th 2022.

Exhibition "Designing Jewels"

Sometimes reduced to a few pencil lines thrown on a sheet of paper, but often taking on the appearance of a veritable work of art, rich in color and nuance, drawings or designs of jewelry are unique in that they touch us by their beauty, as much as they teach us about the process of creating a piece of jewelry.

The Secrets of Jewelry Design

Little studied and published, even more rarely exhibited, jewelry drawings remain relatively unknown to the general public. Nevertheless, this drawing plays an essential role, serving as the reference point for all those involved in the creation of the jewelry item. Since the Renaissance, the drawing constitutes the first, and indeed, one might say the primordial step, in that it gives life to the idea, and allows the idea to be realized.

It is to this long neglected object—a technical tool serving the artisans involved in the fabrication of the jewelry but also a sensitive work—which L’ÉCOLE, School of Jewelry Arts wishes to pay tribute, by shining a light on its history, technique, authors and status. Following the launch in 2018 of a research project into jewelry design and the development of a course on this unique subject, L’ÉCOLE is proud to organize the first exhibition devoted to this theme, explored from a wide variety of perspectives.

The selected works broadly cover the 19th century, beginning in the 1760s and ending with the First World War, and were executed by numerous artists and designers, either famous or anonymous, illustrating a great diversity of techniques and uses. All come from the Van Cleef & Arpels Jewelry Culture Fund, set up for research, presentation and educational purposes.

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Digital promenade

Go further in your discovery of jewelry design through our digital promenade and learn more about the drawings you have admired in the exhibition.

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The jewelry drawing has long remained hidden from view and from the public. Functional or the testimonials of unfulfilled dreams, since the 15th century, these paper jewels nevertheless constitute the unknown side of the jewels to which they have often given birth.
This book presents some one hundred drawings, mainly from the Van Cleef & Arpels Jewelry Culture Fund, ranging from the second half of the 18th century to the start of the 20th century. For the first time, it sheds light on this largely ignored part of the decorative arts, in which anonymous artisans and artists rub shoulders with the great figures of the jewelry world, Tiffany, Lalique, Vever, as well as renowned workshops, like Paillet, Brédillard and Mellerio- Borgnis.
Through the study of its technique, authors or its use, the book, which accompanies the exhibition at L’ÉCOLE, School of Jewelry Arts, beginning on October 14, 2021, provides a glimpse into a range of topics, and shines light on a type of drawing that is at once a tool, an archival document and a veritable work of art.

Authors: Guillaume Glorieux, Director of Teaching and Research at L’ÉCOLE, School of Jewelry Arts.
Michaël Decrossas & Stéphanie Desvaux, exhibition curators: ‘‘Designing Jewels’’.
Editor: Editions Norma / L’ÉCOLE, School of Jewelry Arts
Publishing date: Autumn 2021
192 pages, approximately 130 illustrations
Bilingual French-English edition
Price: 39 euros

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