18 October 1999
AN ELEGANT RUBY AND DIAMOND AND YELLOW GOLD SEAFLOWER BROOCH, JEAN SCHLUMBERGER, TIFFANY & CO.
Tiffany & Co.
The sculpted pav-set diamond seaflower enhanced by circular and oval-cut rubies and yellow gold motifs, mounted in 18K and platinum diamond, with French hallmarks and maker's mark
Signed Schlumberger, Tiffany
The seaflower brooch, designed in 1959, is one of the most exciting of all Schlumberger's creations. The vitality, freshness and imagination of his work is immediately evident; the inspiration of the design is instantly identifiable. Schlumberger's fascination with exotic creatures of the sea began early in his career and continued throughout his life. At his island retreat in Guadeloupe, he was able to swim in the Caribbean water and observe the marine life in its natural habitat. These forms could be adapted to his jewelry designs with accuracy, but with the touch of charm that set his work apart. The brooch, set with diamonds and rubies, mounted in platinum and yellow gold, has an organic, half-flower, half-animal quality, clinging, almost alive. In producing so three-dimensional a jewel, Schlumberger was faced with a difficult technical fabrication problem. It was an obstacle, however, that he and his craftsman overcame as easily as if it had never existed at all.
"Jewels from the Collection of Ailsa Mellon Bruce", Christie's New York, December 7, 1988, Lot 527.
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