The Artistic Luxury: Fabergé, Tiffany, Lalique exhibit is here in town at the California Legion of Honor museum. This morning, I fought the rain and traffic in order to be able to attend Alan Revere’s lecture on The Art of Jewelry Making, as a bonus to the exhibit.
Here are a few of Alan’s words of wisdom (in making jewelry) that I walked away with:
- The quickest shortcut is to do it right the first time.
- It is a race for quality and not a race against time.
- There are 10 techniques but 10,000 tricks.
The exhibit captured the moment when these three designers rivaled each other at the 1900 Paris World's Fair. It was an event where each of them presented their most spectacular creations to show the world what they were capable of in order to win future commissions. It was an exciting time in design history.
At the turn of the 20th century, Art Nouveau (a design style and philosophy) spread throughout Europe. I remember my architecture history class where we studied about René Lalique’s bronze figures, Louis Comfort Tiffany’s stained glass, Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s Glasgow School of Art, Antoni Gaudí’s lava-like Sagrada Família, Victor Horta and the Vienna Secessionists, and Hector Guimard’s metro entrances.
Seeing the works of these masters at the exhibit, I feel sad to see some of the techniques are extinct or had gone out of favor. In this economic climate, I felt I had to keep my work simple so that they are affordable. Yet this exhibit inspires me to keep pushing my limits, learning new skills, and to not lose my sense of purpose.