Drawn to BeautyThe Art and Atelier of Jean Schlumberger
December 15, 2018 – March 10, 2019
Jean Schlumberger’s radiant, celebrated creations of gems and precious metals rank him among the most important and innovative jewelry designers of the twentieth century. This complementary exhibition to Jewels of the Imagination: Radiant Masterworks by Jean Schlumberger from the Mellon Collection opening at the Museum of Fine Arts on the same date, will be the first to explore the artist’s life and artistic process.
Drawn to Beauty considers the designer’s work through three interrelated themes: his formative years in pre-World War II Paris; the efflorescence of his mature style in New York City as related to the natural world; and his career as associated with his friends and patrons—the stars, socialites, and butterflies of the Jet-Set 60s and 70s.
Beginning with his first jewelry fashioned in pre-war Paris to his halcyon years at Tiffany & Company, Schlumberger’s creations showed a remarkable, magnetic creativity. Drawn to Beauty will include letters and drawings by Jean Schlumberger, as well as several sketches—which he noted serve as “the only link between the three members of that complex and disparate trio formed by the client, craftsman, and creator.”
The exhibition will also feature jewelry and objets d’art, in addition to personal items, photographs, and ephemera. Many of these works—drawn from private holdings, archives, or family collections—are on view for the first time. Together they offer a fresh and innovative look at Jean Schlumberger, whose brilliant jewelry and decorative objects embody this remarkable master’s daring artistry, dazzling imagination, and utter devotion to design.