Paris in bloom: Van Cleef & Arpels Florae exhibition
Parisian heritage brand honours an evergreen inspiration
On Place Vendôme in Paris, at the grand 17th century Hôtel d’Évreux, Van Cleef & Arpels invites us for a stroll through a precious garden. On display until 14 November and with sets designed by architect Tsuyoshi Tane, the master jeweller’s Florae exhibition groups 100 small treasures – both contemporary and archival designs made the cut – all contrasted with Mika Ninagawa’s vibrant photography.
Here, Van Cleef & Arpels evergreens include a 1945 Ranunculus-themed secret watch, a clip in the shape of a bunch of forget-me-nots or a chain of white and red roses, rendered in diamonds and rubies, naturellement. A quintet of detachable clips bloom with gemstone petals and are arranged along a 1940 transformable flower collier with yellow gold Tubogaz chain. There are daisies too - in the shape of a 1964 asymmetrical brooch set with rubies and diamonds - and narcissus. A trio of 1968 narcissus blooms (brooch, a set of earrings) are sculpted in tactile relief from yellow gold and platinum, at their centre pistils imagined in sparkling white diamonds. And while assembled treasures shed light on Van Cleef & Arpels’ capture of flora and fauna through century and decades past, Florae also celebrates the brand’s influence as a maker.
For a souvenir, how about one of Van Cleef & Arpels’ Rose de Noël brooches, perhaps set with red carnelian petals?