A DIAMOND BROOCH, BY VAN CLEEF AND ARPELS,

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Lot 29
A DIAMOND BROOCH,
BY VAN CLEEF AND ARPELS, CIRCA 1935

Sold for £ 122,750 (US$ 163,675) inc. premium
A DIAMOND BROOCH, BY VAN CLEEF AND ARPELS, CIRCA 1935
Designed as a corkscrew curl ribbon, set throughout with brilliant and baguette-cut diamonds, mounted in platinum and gold, diamonds approximately 8.60 carats total, signed Van Cleef & Arpels, numbered 43843, French assay marks, maker's marks, length 8.8cm

Footnotes

  • From the Collection of Dame Joan Collins

    The economic crisis of The Great Depression inspired a vogue for many versatile jewels, particularly clip brooches that could be worn on lapels, hat trims and the latest hairstyles. Annular forms imitated an increasingly mechanical age and the more two-dimensional elements of this very three-dimensional brooch can be seen in other Van Cleef & Arpels jewels of the time.

    During an era of economic and political uncertainty, Van Cleef & Arpels were extremely innovative throughout the 1930s – a decade that began and ended on high notes for the Maison; firstly in 1931 at the Exposition Coloniale in Paris and secondly in 1939 at The World's Fair in New York. The firm's reputation for daring technical innovation was cemented during this decade, particularly with the creation of the Minaudière and the 'Serti Mystérieux' or 'Mystery Setting' technique, which Van Cleef & Arpels perfected and patented in 1933.

    To pavé-set diamonds onto a three-dimensional platinum scroll with a smooth and seamless finish is a highly complex and adventurous technique that requires the expertise of a select few. The spiralling diamond ribbon in this brooch, cleverly creates the illusion of being threaded through fabric when worn on a lapel or hat trim. For a similar scroll adorning a minaudière as a thumbpiece, see ed. Possémé, E., 'Van Cleef & Arpels, The Art of High Jewelry', Les Arts Décoratifs, Paris, 2012, pp. 82-85, ill. p.85 (Van Cleef & Arpels Collection, original number 43130).
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