Paris was undoubtedly the cultural home for jewelry in the early 20th century and Cartier's jewelers and designers were at the forefront of the extraordinary objects being produced. Edmond Foret was one of Cartier's principal designers, responsible for creating exceptional jewels for clients that included members of the Russian Court. When a scandalous and public affair with Claude Durel, a model for Revillon began, the company transferred Monsieur Foret to their New York office in the mid 1940's. Madame Durel accompanied him and a decade later, they left New York and moved to Buenos Aires. There, he was able to produce highly unique pieces independently, capitalizing on the glamour of the post war 1950's.
Reminiscent of a jeweled Mohgul anklet, the diamond bombé bangle (lot 335) is entirely pavé-set with old European-cut diamonds and accented by larger diamonds that are slightly raised, giving it depth and texture. Also indicative of the diamond jewelry that was so desired in the 1950's is the diamond spray brooch (lot 334). Here, old European-cut diamonds are paired with a spray of baguette-cut diamonds, which can be detached and worn as two separate brooches. Treated diamonds began to appear in fine jewelry during this time. The treated diamond and coral ring (lot 333) illustrates M. Foret's talent for pairing stones to produce unusual color combinations.
Obviously influenced by exotic themes, the sculpted gold cuff bracelet (lot 329) is heavy and bold, yet balanced when worn, possibly of Middle Eastern inspiration.
No design is complete without superb execution. It is Foret's design talents, combined with a technical understanding, that has given us the legacy of a truly gifted artist.
THE PROPERTY OF A LADY (cont.)