Emmanuel Tarpin set up his high jewellery atelier in Paris when he was 25 and by the end of the year in 2017, his Geranium Leaf aluminum earrings were being sold at Christie’s, immediately putting him on the map. A sculptor at heart, Tarpin makes use of innovative materials and uses strong lines within his work and produces only a few pieces every year, each an optical illusion which mesmerises through its texture, colour and depth.
After graduating from the High School of art and Design in Geneva, he landed himself an internship in Paris in a studio working for Van Cleef & Arpels, followed by a three-year collaboration with the brand giving him the opportunity to work on exceptional pieces and fine tuning his mastering of high end jewellery techniques.
Necklace: 18K white gold set with two pear-shaped white diamonds
(approx. 7.03 CTS and 6.98 CTS), 336 black diamonds (approx. 6.61 CTS) 331 white diamonds (approx. 5.65 CTS)
Creating a name for himself, Tarpin was named Designer of the Year at the Town and Country Jewelry Awards which led him to earning the title of the most sought after designer. Drawn to jewellery design at a young age, “I always had this need of doing something with my hands, to think in volume which I expressed through my passion for gemology and my practice of sculpture,” his jewellery philosophy involves always being spontaneous.
Geneva-based jewellery house de Grisogono has picked the young talent Tarpin as the first in a series of guest designers at the maison’s Artist in Residence program. “Being part of this collaboration gives me an opportunity to immerse myself into another universe,” says Tarpin. “It is also always exciting to think differently, to be confronted to another aesthetic. Collaborating with de Grisgono is really rich because I can propose my own interpretation of the Maison’s codes.”
Earrings: 18K white gold and titanium set with 2 turquoise drops (approx. 66.84 cts),
418 emeralds (approx. 7.01 cts) and 480 blue saphhires (approx. 11.69 cts)
For the collaboration, he was asked to use the house’s design codes as a starting point for a six-piece capsule entitled Prologue.
Prologue is the first of three chapters. “For this chapter, I really wanted to represent de Grisogono’s essence, the black diamond. I chose to create a contrast between black and white diamonds.”
The Swiss house and Tarpin both love volume and the designer found himself playing around with the idea of ribbons and ropes, something light, playful and aerial, relying on a feminine couture fashion-inspired ribbon motif expressed in spiraling loops and interlaced cordelettes. “It is all about duality, rhythm, contrasts and volume,” he adds.
8K white gold set with a turquoise cabochon (approx. 18.08 cts), 18 white diamonds (approx. 2.35 cts), 49 pink saphhires (approx. 3.519 cts) and 131 amethysts (approx. 8.61 cts)
Sharing a common notion of innovation, design and a love for the element of surprise, Tarin and de Grisogono’s collaboration will keep the creative flames burning bright in Geneva ateliers. Growing up in the town of Lake Annecy in the shadows of the majestic French Alps, Tarpin has grown up surrounded by nature.
His appreciation of the flowers, light and beauty of his environment is seen in the interpretation of the world around him. Think buttercup transformed into a golden ring or lilies transformed into ultra light aluminum earrings. A range of styles from abstract to hyper realistic and aluminum in vibrant colours all closely linked to nature is the designer’s aesthetic. “I love autumn because of the colours gradient of the trees. Mountain colours are really special to me.” degrisogono.com
Images courtesy of Cindy Chao and De Grisogono
From the Winter Issue 2019 of Harper's BAZAAR Art