Van Cleef & Arpels presents seven creations at the Fine Art and Antique Fair, TEFAF 2024
08 FEB 2024
Bracelet, 1968: Yellow gold, turquoise, amethysts, diamonds Heritage collection
Van Cleef & Arpels will exhibit seven striking jewellery pieces at the Fine Art and Antique Fair in Maastricht, from March 9 to March 14, 2024.
For the past 11 years, Van Cleef & Arpels has participated in the Fine Art and Antique Fair, TEFAF, in Maastricht, an event bringing together masterpieces of various disciplines, from antique artwork to grand master paintings, and even High Jewellery pieces. As part of this prestigious display, scheduled this year from March 9 to 14, the Richemont Maison is highlighting seven pieces: five from its Heritage collection and two contemporary creations. Each of these carefully selected jewels reflects the Van Cleef & Arpels universe and attests to its exceptional savoir-faire. A blend of tradition and modernity, they illustrate the Maison’s history and inventive spirit, as well as the sources of inspiration it holds dear.
The Heritage collection features nearly 120 antique Jewellery and High Jewellery pieces for sale, all of which are jewellery pieces and precious objects created by Van Cleef & Arpels between the 1920s and the 1990s. Before joining this ensemble, each piece is meticulously examined by the Maison’s experts, both in the workshops and through archival research, to trace its history and guarantee its authenticity. For this latest edition of TEFAF Maastricht, Van Cleef & Arpels has selected two Leaf clips from the 1940s and three creations from the 1960s, showcasing in equal measure the Maison’s influence on the evolution of the jewellery arts and the large gamut of its influences.
Vitality of nature
The Maison finds infinite inspiration in the world of flora, as seen in the above two leaf-shaped clips. With great restraint, their subtly asymmetrical outlines pay homage to the vitality and expressive spontaneity of nature. With its edges so clean they border on abstraction, this first creation, from 1943, has a polished gold surface spangled with star-set diamonds reminiscent of those that have graced Van Cleef & Arpels’ iconic Ludo bracelets since the 1930s. This sculptural clip is characteristic of a time when the use of yellow gold, innovatively and virtuously crafted by the Maison’s artisans, was favored. The leaf’s veins are recreated with creases in the metal whose reflective surface elegantly mirrors the sparkle of the gems. The 1947 Leaf clip, like its 1943 equivalent, sees its central vein recreated with a slender curve studded with a succession of square rubies, whose intense purple hue is brought to life by a yellow gold border. With its multitude of diamonds of many sizes, this piece is an example of Van Cleef & Arpels’ post-war return to the late-19th century’s particularly detailed naturalistic aesthetic. A refinement that served to return some wonder to a world rebuilding itself, like this autumnal leaf crystallised by the frost of early winter.
Leaf clip, 1943: Yellow gold, rubies, diamonds from the Heritage collection / Leaf clip, 1947: Platinum, yellow gold, white gold, rubies, diamonds Heritage collection
Sophisticated spirit of couture
In 1933, Charles Arpels first had the idea for this sophisticated jewellery case that would go on to contribute to Van Cleef & Arpels’ reputation around the world. Crafted from precious materials, the Minaudière borrows in equal measure from both the realms of jewellery and objets d’art, another domain in which the Maison’s expertise and innovative spirit fully express themselves. Equipped with a mirror and ingenious compartments, this piece allowed women to carry lipstick, calling cards, and a cigarette case during outings. While being practical, this 1961 Minaudière is no less representative of the spirit of couture so dear to the Maison with the delicately woven texture of the gold. The clasp, set with a row of graduated diamonds, adds a final note of elegance to this object.
Minaudière, 1961: Platinum, yellow gold, diamonds Heritage collection
Contemporary high jewellery
On the occasion of TEFAF Maastricht, Van Cleef & Arpels unveils two unique High Jewellery pieces, perfectly representative of its repertoire: a Between the Finger ring featuring a delicate multicolored butterfly and a ballet dancer clip inspired by couture. These creations highlight the importance, in the Maison’s imagination, of both nature and dance, two worlds that continually breathe lightness and grace into the most precious materials.
Léonore ballerina clip: White gold, yellow gold, sapphires, diamonds
This clip depicts a sumptuously dressed ballerina rising on pointe to gracefully leap into the air. The dancer, named Léonore, sports a voluminous openwork skirt paved with a myriad of diamonds of various sizes, some pear-shaped, others round, giving the appearance of gossamer lace. Emblematic of the Van Cleef & Arpels spirit, this creation is part of a long tradition of clips that poetically marry the worlds of couture and dance. Since Louis Arpels’ keen interest in ballet gave rise to the first ballerinas in the 1940s, the art of movement has remained a vivid passion for the Maison. This is evidenced today by its collaborations with renowned choreographers and the Dance Reflections by Van Cleef & Arpels initiative in support of contemporary dance, which has helped promote a multitude of events and artists around the world since its launch in 2020.
About Van Cleef & Arpels
Van Cleef & Arpels was founded at 22 Place Vendôme, Paris, in 1906, following Alfred Van Cleef’s marriage to Estelle Arpels in 1895. Over the decades, the High Jewellery Maison exhibited a brand of excellence that earned it a reputation as a worldwide reference. Drawing inspiration from nature, couture, dance or whimsical worlds, Van Cleef & Arpels creations stand out as a gateway to a timeless universe of beauty and harmony.
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