Chaumet Drawing from Nature

Gaëlle Rio, Marc Jeanson

A stunning celebration of the ravishing nature-themed drawings created by Parisian high jewelry house Chaumet from the eighteenth century to today.

One of the most storied high jewelry houses in Paris, Chaumet has been entwined with the history of France since its founding in 1780. Appointed official jeweler to Empress Joséphine, the house has passed down its unique savoir-faire for almost 240 years. Each generation of Chaumet jewelers has looked to the natural world as a key source of inspiration, dreaming up ruby orchids, delicate laurel wreath tiaras, striking diamond starbursts, and a beguiling array of animals—from birds and butterflies to snakes and octopuses—on necklaces, brooches, and headpieces.

Drawings were used not only to research and develop ideas, revealing little-known aspects of the creative process of jewelry design, but also to present fully conceptualized bespoke pieces to clients, tempting them to place an order. These beautiful and inventive drawings—many of which are published here for the first time—are presented in thematic chapters (“Flowers,” “Trees and Plants,” “Bestiary,” and “Universe”), while essays by curator Gaëlle Rio offer a concise art-historical perspective.

A visually fascinating compendium, Chaumet: Drawing from Nature will delight all lovers of jewelry, art, and nature.

Reviews

Conveys whole conversations about the beautiful jewels the Parisian maison has created since its founding? Author Gaëlle Rio puts the firm's fascination with the natural world into an art-history perspective, showing how it translated these themes into breathtaking jewels over the decades.

— Rapaport Magazine

Contributors

Gaëlle Rio

Text By

Gaëlle Rio is Director of the Mus?e de la Vie Romantique in Paris. She specializes in nineteenth-century art and in her previous position at the Petit Palais curated a number of exhibitions, including ?Jewelry from the Petit Palais?; ?The Art of Pastel, from Degas to Redon?; and ?Paris 1900.

Marc Jeanson

Contributions By

Marc Jeanson is former director of the National Herbarium at the Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle in Paris. He is currently the Botanical Director of the Majorelle Garden in Marrakech, Morocco.