The jewels of Paris – The elsewhere of Boucheron

Lhe pieces were imagined during the first confinement. “Our horizons had closed in on closed spaces. I felt the need to expand my mental landscapes through imagination,” explains Claire Choisne, Boucheron’s creative director. Presented three weeks ago in the salons of 26, place Vendôme, the “Ailleurs” collection is the fruit of this meditation.

Since 2017, the studio has been delivering fine jewelry in January, drawing inspiration from the house’s extensive archives, but allowing itself total freedom for the July “Carte Blanche” collection. This freedom flourishes in an all-out search for new materials, new techniques, sometimes borrowed from the flagships of high-tech industry. Innovation is expressed without hesitation: in 2018, real flower petals were attached to their disturbingly realistic titanium valve; in 2020, NASA provided the airgel with which the workshops captured the essence of the clouds; in 2021, Saint-Gobain delivered the process for attaching the holographic substrate of light to rock crystal.

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Universe Showdown

“We have time to sell these collections, which are on the borderline of fundamental research, fine jewelry and contemporary art”, explained last year Hélène Poulit-Duquesne, CEO of Boucheron, who knows that the house, rich in a heritage, a clientele, and know-how that have nothing to envy to the giants of the sector, can authorize the exploration of different paths, in accordance with its privileged historical status. Remember that, this year, many European royal courts have once again distinguished the jeweler: we think of the presentation of the official portrait of Princess Ingrid Alexandra of Norway who wore for the first time her Boucheron ring tiara inherited from Princess Ingeborg ; or, to cite just one example, the laurel tiara worn by Crown Princess Victoria at the traditional dinner party for the Swedish royal family last April.

With “Ailleurs”, Claire Choisne goes in search of essence. The essence of nature, its vegetation and its inhabitants, the essence of adventure and travel. In this research, the creative director uses all the resources of the oxymoron and the unexpected layering: gold, diamonds, fine and precious stones mingle in turn with rattan marrow, shell, wood of Santos rosewood, with hollowed-out pebbles, butterfly wings and burnt wood (three thousand year old swamp oak, charred according to the Japanese method of Shou Sigi Ban to compose spectacular ornaments which, each in their own way, constitute a challenge original.

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On a Pie ring, a rock crystal monobloc has been hollowed out to facilitate the insertion of a white gold counter-form set with diamonds. The rattan fiber composing a brooch that can be transformed into a necklace was moistened before being dried on a brass support while a gold rod held it in place; the shells have been scanned to reproduce their irregular and organic curves in gold and diamonds; the ultra-realistic braiding that develops on a cuff bracelet adorned with a 37.97-carat green tourmaline was made possible thanks to the use of aluminum treated by cataphoresis, while titanium was favored on a fleur de Paradis brooch. White marble pebbles tattooed with constellations of gold and diamonds were hollowed out until they became translucent, while airbrushing was used to reproduce the helical structure of a seashell – as it would appear if had been X-rayed – on the mother-of-pearl of a white gold necklace. In this high jewelry where the marble is light, where the fiber becomes rigid, where subterfuge makes the truth of nature sparkle, Claire Choisne reminds us that the real journey does not consist in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes. .

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The jewels of Paris – The elsewhere of Boucheron

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