Chaumet’s Exhibition in China Travels through Time
Chaumet’s 'Imperial Splendours' exhibition draws attention to how the French jeweller to kings and emperors preserves a continuous mastery of the ‘art of jewellery.’
What’s more romantic than seeing the antique jewellery royalty gifted their beloved? Chaumet’s 'Imperial Splendours' exhibition is displaying all sorts of treasures, from the micro-mosaic parure Napoléon I gave to Empress Marie-Louise to the acrostic bracelets with secret messages he gave her to celebrate their wedding, The exhibition, held in Beijing’s Palace Museum, spans Chaumet’s history from the end of the 18th century to the beginning of this one.
Scientifically directed by Henri Loyrette and curated by Béatrice de Plinval, 'Imperial Splendours' reveals the high-end Parisian jeweller’s timeless heritage, history and traditions. Some 300 works, including jewels, paintings, drawings and objets d’art illustrate Chaumet’s characteristic “art of jewellery.” Plus they show how throughout the centuries, Chaumet’s creations have echoed the decorative arts and how the house has been in sync with the greatest artistic movements. Twelve emblematic pieces, from 1780 to 2017, tell the Maison’s tale, from its oldest creation (memorial box for
the Marquise de Lawoestine, 1789) to a contemporary “Joséphine” ring.
What’s more, the 21st century diadem, the result of a creative competition at Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London, closes the exhibition while opening the doors to the future. Scott Armstrong, a 21-year-old British student came up with “Vertiges” diadem’s winning design. The diadem has been the Maison’s emblem, which has fuelled boundless creativity, since Empress Joséphine’s days.
In light of the historic affinity between Chaumet and China, there’s also a selection of works belonging to the Palace Museum, which shows how the French and Chinese have a mutual love for quality, shared inspirations and reciprocal influences. Other renowned museums have come together to support the event, namely the Musée du Louvre, the Château de Fontainebleau and the Victoria and Albert Museum of London.
Click Begin Slideshow to see more pieces from the exhibition.