Art Deco Mastery: The Work of Cartier

The sleek design and bold colors reflect Cartier’s popular Oriental aesthetic The sleek design and bold colors reflect Cartier’s popular Oriental aesthetic

Elegance and prestige. Jewelry, timepieces, and objects d’art created by Cartier are highly distinguishable by any other jewelry by their striking beauty. Exceptionally crafted in high detail and quality, Cartier pieces are everlasting. King Edward VII of England once referred to Cartier as "the jeweler of kings and the king of jewelers.” Though stated in 1903, this testimonial stands true.

Founded in Paris in 1847 by Louis-Francois Cartier, the family owned workshop transformed from a financially unstable company into a successful and popular brand name that created some of the finest and distinctive men’s watches. These wristwatches offered an entirely new and fashionable design. Later, along with the creation of Cartier’s first women’s wristwatch, Cartier expanded its design reach to include exotic orientalist and modern aesthetics. Most importantly, Cartier incorporated the use of Art Deco in their products in 1906. Largely popular at the beginning of the 20th century, the Art Deco movement characterized geometric, abstract, and linear aspects.

This 18K gold case features two compartments and a sliding coral and diamond latch This 18K gold case features two compartments and a sliding coral and diamond latch

This decorative art movement, which developed alongside the emerging industrial economy in France, was part of a rapidly changing culture. Nodding to the advancements and processes of technology, Art Deco aesthetics represented a paired down vision of an embrace of machinery and modernism. In other words, Art Deco showed the demands of mass production and embrace of new material as it showcased linear, modern, and paired down symmetrical forms. Such an example of the style of Art Deco can be seen in our Cartier Diamond Clock, 1950. Enhanced by rich diamonds and beautiful mother-of-pearl face, this clock is cased in a sleek, stylish casing. Gold Roman numerals punctuated with white diamonds and red and black enameling complete this extraordinarily beautiful and geometrical piece.

While catering to numerous members of French royalty, bankers, and well-to-do industrialists, this prestigious company flourished in success. By 1910, Cartier was able to enhance their jewelry, wristwatches, make-up compacts, and other objects d’art with influence from a variety of orientalist cultures and art movements. The Cubist work of Braque and Picasso and the recently traveled exotic areas such as the Far East and Persia, all gave Cartier access into new types of design. Pairing these influences with the geometry of Art Deco, Cartier was able to create stunning time pieces and objects d’art.

This stunning diamond and sapphire bracelet by Cartier absolutely sparkles This stunning diamond and sapphire bracelet by Cartier absolutely sparkles

This Cartier Art Deco Compact, 1920, represents timelessness, value, and the true forms of Art Deco. Made of 18K gold, this rectangular red box contains a beveled mirror and a stylized Oriental latch that completes the piece. Most importantly, the outside of the box is decorated in symmetrical and geometrical interwoven basket weave pattern that is completed by delicate coral and diamonds. Marked “Cartier, Made in France” this sublimely elegant accessory boasts excellence and luxury.

As Cartier is so known for its fine and unmistakably gorgeous jewelry, this 4.50 carat sapphire and diamond bracelet embodies all the true Art Deco fundamentals. The diamonds are particularly set to represent a stunning symmetrical, streamlined form and two striking blue sapphires are set in the middle.

 

 

 

 

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