As the Biennale approaches, and we jet off to Paris with a couple of magnificent Line Vautrin mirrors, it seems the perfect time to showcase some of her smaller, no less magnificent boxes and jewelry. 

 

More often than not, these smaller pieces convey an idea, anything from a line of poetry to the plot of a Greek myth. Here are a few of our favorite small pieces and the messages they convey, creations of the chic-est Parisian jeweler of them all.

Intro
Le Metro

Le Métropolitain

"The Subway"

BELT

France, circa 1945-1950

Bronze doré

 

Metro, Politain, Anvers …” Covered with train imagery, this belt displays a succession of Paris Métro stops. The clasp connecting the loop is a train car passing from one station to the next; the stations, from a distance, serve as visual reminders of railroad tracks.

Le Langage des Signes

"Sign Language"

BOX

France, circa 1942-1950

Bronze argenté, interior lined with cork

 

This rare bronze argenté box is not just beautiful—it’s immensely clever.

The lid spells out the alphabet in sign language. It is a box made with hands, used with hands, and depicting hands. You could say it speaks with its hands in many more ways than one.

 

Le lang
lamour

L’Amour soutient, souffle, soulage, sourit, soupire, souleve,  soumet, soule

“Love supports, breathes, soothes, smiles, sighs, elevates, submits, intoxicates”

France, circa 1942-1950

Bronze doré, interior lined with cork

 

Vautrin says it well, but cupid says it better.

La Manifestation

"The Demonstration"

BRACELET

France, circa 1945-1950

A bronze argenté

 

This bracelet evinces the spirit and motion of a demonstration—side by side and indistinguishable from one another, the spectral figures display a certain unity; their books a tangible representation of a common voice. The curve of the bracelet gives the scene a three-dimensionality the billowing robes serve to heighten.

Le Manifestation
Ophélie/"Ophelia"

Ophélie

"Ophelia"

France, circa 1942-1950

Bronze doré box, interior lined with cork

 

This box was inspired Rimbaud’s poem about Ophelia, of Shakespeare’s Hamlet, who drowns tragically. In Vautrin’s iteration, the doomed Ophelia’s eyes have been closed to the world and her head adorned with water-lillies that Rimbaud says, in death, are “sighing around her.”

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