• Jewels : The Geneva Sale auction at Christies

    Sale 1371

    Jewels : The Geneva Sale

    18 November 2009, Geneva

  • Lot 204

    **AN ART DECO EMERALD, DIAMOND AND MOTHER-OF-PEARL BROOCH

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    **AN ART DECO EMERALD, DIAMOND AND MOTHER-OF-PEARL BROOCH
    The central Moghul hexagonal carved emerald, 19th century, set within a single and square-cut diamond frame to the similarly-set surmount and inlaid mother-of-pearl clip reverse, mounted in platinum, circa 1925, 5.6 cm long


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    Mrs Ruwe was a television producer for Dupont International in New York before moving to Washington to join the White House staff in 1969. As Social Secretary for the White House to President Gerald Ford, she was responsible for planning functions for visiting Heads of State, and directing such events as the largest dinner even given by Henry Kissinger for the United Nations General Assembly. In 1975, First Lady Betty Ford was Matron of Honour at her wedding to Lester Nicholas Ruwe, Chief of Staff to President Nixon. Her husband later became Ambassador to the Republic of Iceland, where the couple hosted the Reagan at the embassy during the historic Reagan-Gorbachev summit.

    This wonderful Art Deco brooch from her collection is a fine example of a later-mounted Moghul emerald carving. The re-use of earlier carved gems became particularly fashionable in the early twentieth century, a revival popularised by such maisons as Boucheron, Cartier and Van Cleef & Arpels. In 1911, Queen Alexandra, then 'Empress of India', suggested to Pierre Cartier, "come to us in India, and perhaps India will be good for you". Cartier duly obeyed, and soon several of the most famous French jewellers had begun working closely with Indian royal families, remounting the ancient gems in maharajahs' collections in a contemporary Art Deco style. Although not signed, the very fashionable geometric diamond mount emphasises the hexagonal form, and contrasts the delicate carving of the earlier Moghul emerald, as a perfect example of such modernised jewels of the period.

    Special Notice

    Prospective purchasers are advised that several countries prohibit the importation of property containing materials from endangered species, including but not limited to coral, ivory and tortoiseshell. Accordingly, prospective purchasers should familiarize themselves with relevant customs regulations prior to bidding if they intend to import this lot into another country.


    Pre-Lot Text

    FORMERLY THE PROPERTY OF THE LATE NANCY LAMMERDING RUWE