The Master Jewelers

The Master Jewelers

by A. Kenneth Snowman
     
 

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In the mid-nineteenth century, the master jewelers of the Western world began to shed the anonymity under which artist-craftsmen had generally worked. They emerged as individual voices, discarding the bland, predictable standards of the earlier era in jewelry design in favor of evocative new creations.

The renowned designers whose work is featured in this book can

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Overview

In the mid-nineteenth century, the master jewelers of the Western world began to shed the anonymity under which artist-craftsmen had generally worked. They emerged as individual voices, discarding the bland, predictable standards of the earlier era in jewelry design in favor of evocative new creations.

The renowned designers whose work is featured in this book can be instantly identified by their particular interests and discoveries. Fabergé emphasized originality of design and the quality of craftsmanship, rather than the intrinsic value of the materials used. Castellani is known for his nostalgic glances back at Etruscan gold work. Lalique was irresistibly fascinated by the strange forms he adapted from nature. The searching, critical eye of a Cartier or a Boucheron lent chic to their beloved abstract patterns.

In fifteen chapters written by leading experts in the field, the world of fine jewelry, encompassing its social, aesthetic, and business aspects, springs to life. The magnificent illustrations display extraordinary confections of gold, silver, and platinum, gems cut and polished in every conceivable fashion, and enamels, translucent, opaque, or as clear as stained-glass windows—all designed and executed to enhance the allure of the people fortunate enough to wear them.

Featuring work by: Boucheron &149; Bulgari &149; Cartier &149; Castellani &149; Falize &149; Fabergé &149; Fontenay &149; Fouquet &149; Giuliano &149; Hancock &149; Lalique &149; Tiffany &149; Tillander &149; Van Cleef & Arpels &149; Verdura &149; Vever

Author Biography: A. Kenneth Snowman is Chairman of Wartski, the London jewelers. His many books include Eighteenth Century Gold Boxes of Paris and Carl Fabergé, Goldsmith to the Imperial Court of Russia.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Many of the stunning pieces pictured here would be more at home in a museum than adorning mere mortals. These are consummate creations of 19th- and 20th-century designers who chose gems and metals above oils and canvas as their raw materials. In 15 chapters written by as many connoisseurs and scholars, the book considers the history and productivity of various legendary jewelry firms (e.g., Cartier) and master craftsmen in the decorative and applied arts. Whether drawing their inspiration from ancient Rome, the Renaissance or Asia, these undisputed artists often fashioned the fabulous: bejeweled distaffs and diadems; translucent cloisonne enamels; glittering Faberge eggs; a flexible collar of sapphires and diamonds, courtesy of Tiffany workmen, that was 1800 hours in the making. Snowman, head of the London jewelry house Wartski, presents a serious, glitteringly detailed and seductive look at incredible artifacts. (Nov.)
Library Journal - Library Journal
Boucheron, Bulgari, Fouquet, Lalique, Tiffany, and Verdura are among the 16 jewelers extraordinaire highlighted in this delightful and exquisite anthology. Prominently featured are spectacular and dramatic illustrations of the legendary creations sought after by royalty and the rich and famous from the 1850s to the present. Chapter by chapter, experts in the field describe the work, the workshops, and the legacies of these world-famous artisans, noting their standards of excellence and artistic integrity above all else. Whether original or revival, inspired by classical artifacts or various cultural influences, styles from art nouveau and art deco to contemporary pieces of the 1980s are carefully delineated. Included are many historic photographs of these master jewelers' shops, famous clients, and lost works. Essential.-- Stephen Allan Patrick, East Tennessee State Univ. Lib., Johnson City

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780500283868
Publisher:
W W Norton & Co Inc
Publication date:
10/28/2002
Pages:
264
Product dimensions:
9.00(w) x 11.90(h) x 0.80(d)

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