February 2011 Archives

Another of the strange jewelers of Paris, this time working in a very Post-Modernist style, is Baptiste Monvoisin (who's name translates roughly to "My Neighbor").  He is primarily a metalworker, with stones being a rare addition, usually highlighting the gold or silver design.  Some of his works clearly take aim at the common tropes of jewelry, like the brilliant-cut diamond, such as the Pop-Art or Diamond rings below

Pop-Art ring in yellow and white gold and black diamondsDiamond ring in silver

Others show a strange dental interest, such as the Molar ring, or the broach in the form of chewed chewing-gum.

Molar ring in yellow goldChewing-Gum broach in pink gold

Using Hipster "Irony" as source he has taken the inexplicably popular trend of intentionally-pixelated art to its logical conclusion is the "Pixel" ring in sand-blasted gold, quite an interesting surface treatment. Along with that is the Mustache cufflink in white gold.


He has some other interesting pieces, including a hand-grenade based on a large Tahitian pearl and a hospital-bracelet rendered in pale yellow gold, but one of the more amusing pieces, conceptually, is this ring, the Bijoux de Famille in yellow gold


All pictures are from his website.


I don't have any more detail then simply the pictures, but apparently some Swedish subway stations are much MUCH more interesting then those in the US


More pictures at the, quite recommended, source.


The question was put from Mayor Curley of Boston to Karl
Compton, president of MIT, in 1948:

I am very desirous that the Institute of Technology have a
competent group of engineers make an immediate study as to ways
and means of removing the huge accumulation not only in Boston,
but throughout the entire state, whether it be by the use of
flame throwers or chemicals or otherwise, so that we may have a
gradual disposal when it starts to melt rather than having
disastrous floods as a consequence of its melting with great
property damage and with injury to the public.

Sadly his response was that it would not be reasonable to use flamethrowers to melt the snow.

Original Letter and Response


Valérie Danenberg* comes to the world of jewelry honestly, her father is an art dealer and her mother sells antique jewelry in the Louvre des Antiquaires in Paris.  After getting a diploma from the Institut National de Gemmologie, and spending 20 years selling antique jewelry, she has recently opened a boutique on the Left Bank selling her own designs.

From this initial collection come a pair of pieces entitled "Beauty and the Beast" (oddly enough the press release has the name in English, despite the text being entirely French otherwise).  The ring is yellow gold set with rubies, diamonds and tzavorites (a type of bright green Garnet), while the necklace is rose gold and silver set with tzavorites(the eyes) and garnets (the dark-red of the antlers).  Frankly the necklace looks like a prop from some sort of Deal-with-the-Devil movie, but perhaps that's just me...it might look less malevolent on someone.


The rest of the collection consists of three pairs of earrings. The so-called Monnaie du Pape (Pope's Money) and Summer Dream consist of the same filigree pattern overlaid on a semi-precious background, mother-of-pearl in the case of the Pope, turquoise for Summer. The use of the design, offcentered and asymmetrically cut off is quite interesting, though the names seem to have little relation to the design. The final pair is a nameless feather design, quite reminiscent of Art deco designs such as Boucheron (see a feather design) or more probably Lalique, as Valérie's mother collects their work.

Monnaie du PapeSummer Dream

( source )

* Her website seems to be down for a redesign at the moment

For the spring/summer of 2011, Boucheron (frequently mentioned before) has another collection of animal themed pieces, the Cabinet of Curiosities. With one exception, these are more common animals then the frogs, snails and elephants that have populated their recent works. This exception is the secret watch, named Khepri, which consists of a scarab(duh) with wings of engraved Lapis Lazuli, emerald eyes and an onyx head.  The bracelet and rest of the main section is covered with white diamonds.

Besides that piece, and a sea-shell shaped broach, called Cyprus, in multi-colored sapphires, diamonds and large white pearls, the rest of the collection are rings.


Of the rings, I think the most interesting are "Nuri" and "Nutkin" (seriously), seen below. Both are done in white gold set with white diamonds and multi-colored sapphires. The parrot has a 4.5 ct blue sapphire as a central stone.


In white gold are also the rings "Pegasus" and "Cyprus". The horse is set with blue and violet sapphires and white diamonds, while the bird is mostly black sapphires with a few diamond accents


The final two rings are not in white gold. "Jamal" is a camel, done in yellow gold, with a >6ct Madagascar sapphire for his hump. The "Flamingo" is in rose gold, set with red and black sapphires as well as diamonds


All in all not a bad collection, and the squirrel and camel (especially that odd little smile) add a nice touch of humor, but nothing really interesting or new...




The cover of the 1922 book "King's Views of New York City", by Moses King.  From a New York Times article on visions of NYC in the future.


Horbet Midras is a site in the Judean Sheplelah (lowlands), and was an active settlement during the 1st and 2nd centuries AD.  Due to looter activities, the IAA has been excavating and have uncovered both Jewish artifacts from this period and later Byzantine work, including a large Basilican church, with lovely mosaics.
midras1 - mosaic.JPG

According to tradition, this area holds the burial of the prophet Zachariah, and the presence of a large crypt under the church indicates that this was possibly built as a memorial church, but that is still a supposition.  As in some of the other sites in the area, there are a series of underground rooms, including store rooms, that were used as refuges during the 2 Judean revolts.  In these have been found artifacts and coins of that period.

Below is a picture of a large section of the site as it has been excavated.  It will be recovered to stabilize the remains until permanenet coverings can be built
midras2 - mabat klali.JPG

Pictures from the IAA


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This page is an archive of entries from February 2011 listed from newest to oldest.

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