How Islamic Artwork Motivated A person of Fashion’s Most Well known Jewelers | Good News

Tiara, Cartier London, unique purchase, 1936. Platinum, diamonds, turquoise. Offered to The Honorable Robert Henry Brand name. Cartier Assortment.
Vincent Wulveryck, Collection Cartier © Cartier

For 175 many years, the term “Cartier” has been synonymous with iconic French glamour, from large diamonds to thoroughly viewed as watches. But component of the jeweler’s signature model was not homegrown—it was influenced by intricate Islamic artwork.

Now, a new exhibition at the Dallas Museum of Art (DMA) explores how Islamic art influenced the French luxury jewelry home and served Cartier develop into a home title all around the environment. Created by the DMA and the Museé des Arts Décoratifs in Paris, together with Cartier, the “Cartier and Islamic Artwork: In Research of Modernity” exhibition is on view now by September 18.

The house’s appreciate affair with Islamic art commenced at the turn of the 20th century, when Middle Japanese artists and retailers began bringing their artwork and antiques to exhibitions in important European towns. Louis J. Cartier, whose grandfather Jacques Cartier experienced launched the French family’s jewelry business in 1847, attended those demonstrates and became fascinated with the styles, styles, colors and composition of Islamic art. His brother Jacques Cartier formulated a similar relationship to the distinct creative design just after touring to India in the winter season of 1911-12.

Female tumbler

Woman tumbler, Iran, early 19th century, The Hossein Afshar Assortment at the Museum of Fantastic Arts, Houston.

© The Museum of Good Arts, Houston Photographer: Will Michels

As they expanded the family members small business around the environment, the brothers began weaving Islamic art types and methods into their bracelets, watches, brooches, necklaces, rings, clocks and other significant-end parts.

Additional than 400 objects—from glittering tiaras to historic images and will work of Islamic art from the DMA’s strong collection—tell the tale of Cartier’s design evolution in the late 19th and early 20th generations.

The Cartier brothers—Louis, Jacques and Pierre—drew inspiration from India, Iran, North Africa, the Arabian Peninsula and over and above to develop the brand’s signature design, which evolved from Neoclassicism to Art Nouveau to Art Deco. Their colourful Tutti Frutti line of the 1920s and ‘30s, for instance, incorporated rubies, emeralds and sapphires in the designs of flowers, berries and leaves identified in common Mughal Indian jewelry.

“The discovery of Islamic art was so new,” Pierre Rainero, Cartier’s director of impression, heritage, and model, tells Women’s Dress in Daily’s Holly Haber. “It was an enchantment of new styles that were incredibly ornamental and quite distinctive from what was in the atmosphere.”


Ewer, late 10th-early 11th century, rock crystal, with enameled gold repairs and fittings by Jean-Valentin Morel (1794-1860), French, The Keir Collection of Islamic Art on mortgage to the Dallas Museum of Art, K.1.2014.1.A-B.

Courtesy of Dallas Museum of Artwork

The exhibition also incorporates present day digital technologies, like extreme magnification and animated video clips, to aid display the inventive procedure and the intricacy of Cartier’s items. A mechanical “breathing necklace” also reveals how a 1948 gold and diamond piece morphs to conform to the neck. As Jean Scheidnes writes for Texas Monthly, the exhibition’s use of technological innovation “empowers the jewellery by making its intricate magnificence far more legible.”

Cartier’s most famed piece of jewelry is the setting for the 45.52-carat blue Hope Diamond, which was mined in the late 17th century in what was then the Islamic Golconda Kingdom. Jean-Baptiste Tavernier, who introduced the diamond back to France, traveled again and forth to Persia and India multiple occasions through his lifetime. His accounts of the Islamic earth both of those fascinated the French and were utilized to justify colonial enlargement into north Africa and India.

Cartier cigarette case

Cigarette circumstance, Cartier Paris, 1930. Gold, lapis lazuli, turquoise, diamond. Cartier Collection.

Vincent Wulveryck, Cartier Collection © Cartier

Even though an exhibition centered on extremely-opulent jewelry that couple folks can afford isn’t likely to modify the entire world or ease geopolitical tensions between East and West, as Islamic artwork pro Sabiha Al Khemir advised Smithsonian’s Amy Crawford in 2010, museums can help bridge the hole amongst different cultures.

Islamic artwork, in particular—and the jewelry impressed by it—”is calling you to appear shut and appear, to take that it is various and check out to comprehend that even although it’s modest, it may possibly have one thing to say. It’s possible it’s whispering. It’s possible you need to have to get closer,” Al Khemir claimed.

“Cartier and Islamic Art: In Search of Modernity” is on look at at the Dallas Museum of Art, by September 18.