DIAMOND-STUDDED SHOWS IN DALLAS AND LONDON EXPLORE THE ESTEEMED HISTORIES OF THE ICONIC JEWELRY HOUSES
By Rhonda Reinhart
This summer, jewelry lovers have multiple opportunities to peruse, admire and marvel over the extraordinary designs created by two of the world’s most revered jewelers as shining examples from beloved brands Cartier and Tiffany & Co. take center stage in a pair of sparkling international exhibitions.
Cartier and Islamic Art: In Search of Modernity
After closing its Paris run earlier this year, Cartier and Islamic Art: In Search of Modernity has arrived at the Dallas Museum of Art. The exhibition, in partnership with the Maison Cartier, examines the influence Islamic art, architecture and jewelry have had on Cartier’s designs from the dawn of the 20th century to today. Louis Cartier – grandson of Louis-François Cartier, founder of the 175-year-old French jewelry powerhouse – was a passionate collector of Persian and Indian art, and it was this fascination that led to the maison’s embrace of the motifs, colors and patterns prevalent in Islamic design. In addition to adapting forms and techniques from Islamic art and architecture starting in the early 20th century, Cartier and his designers began to incorporate materials from Iran, India and the Arab lands. This weaving together of influences from the East and West created a unique new style and resulted in some of Cartier’s most recognizable designs.
The exhibition at the Dallas Museum of Art – the show’s sole North American venue – brings together more than 400 objects from some major international collections, including the Musée des Arts Décoratifs, the Musée du Louvre and the Keir Collection of Islamic Art on loan to the DMA. In addition to iconic Cartier designs – including highlights such as glittering tiaras, bracelets, bandeaus and a striking 1947 bib necklace (pictured) bedecked with diamonds, amethysts and turquoise cabochons – the exhibit features design drawings, archival materials, historical photographs and works of Islamic art, including pieces from Louis Cartier’s personal collection.
DETAILS: Cartier and Islamic Art: In Search of Modernity runs through Sept. 18. Reserve tickets here.
Vision & Virtuosity
In the final room of Tiffany & Co.’s brand exhibition Vision & Virtuosity, which debuted last month at London’s Saatchi Gallery, visitors get an up-close look at the legendary Tiffany Diamond (pictured), the 128.54-carat stunner famously worn by the likes of Audrey Hepburn, Lady Gaga and Beyoncé. But with more than 400 objects from Tiffany’s archives on view – including the company’s famed window displays, its recently acquired 80-carat Empire Diamond and the original script from Breakfast at Tiffany’s – the journey through the exhibition is as splendid as its finale.
Celebrating the 185th anniversary of Tiffany’s founding in New York City, as well as its 150th anniversary in London, Vision & Virtuosity begins with an exploration of the legacy of the brand’s visionary founder, Charles Lewis Tiffany. From there, gallerygoers are treated to a dazzling array of items ranging from the brand’s most elegant engagement rings and outstanding diamond creations to famous works by renowned designers such as Jean Schlumberger, Elsa Peretti and Paloma Picasso. Among the highlights is Schlumberger’s iconic Bird on a Rock brooch, which graces the cover of the exhibition’s 160-page, Assouline-published catalog. But jewels are just the beginning. The exhibition also features an assortment of Tiffany lamps and an entire room dedicated to Breakfast at Tiffany’s, the 1961 Hollywood classic and first movie ever filmed at Tiffany’s flagship Fifth Avenue store.
Once the London edition wraps, Vision & Virtuosity will travel back to where it all began: Tiffany’s home base of New York City, where the exhibition is slated to open in the fall.
DETAILS: Vision & Virtuosity runs through Aug. 19. Reserve tickets through the Tiffany & Co. exhibition app.
RHONDA REINHART is editor of Intelligent Collector.