Entitled “The Timeless Legacy of Indian Jewels” the event attracted jewellery historians, global auction houses and descendants of the leading Maison’s founders. The conference opened on 6 October at Mumbai’s Imperial Club with a discussion about the 184.75-carat Jacob Diamond, one of the world’s largest diamonds now in the possession of the Indian government.
Francesca Cartier Brickell shared some of her family's unpublished letters
Francesca Cartier Brickell of the Cartier family then shared stories from the unpublished letters and diaries of her great-grandfather, Jacques Cartier, including details of the 20th century jewels made for the maharajas and how the relationship between the Maison and India resulted in the birth of Cartier’s iconic Tutti Frutti designs.
(L-R) Maharani Radhikaraje Gaekwad, Usha Balakrishnan, Lisa Hubbard and François Arpels at last week's conference
The second day of the conference saw Lisa Hubbard, a veteran auctioneer and Senior Advisor to Christie’s Jewellery department, discussing what to look for in an important piece of jewellery. Susan Stronge of London’s V&A Museum then shared highlights of their Mughal miniature painting and jewellery collection, before François Arpels focused on important historical designs from Van Cleef & Arpels inspired by India.
The Exhibition of Fine Jewels runs at Saffronart Mumbai until 17 October
The conference also covered a broad range of topics including the jewellery collection of the Royal Family of Baroda, the mystique of the famous Golconda diamonds, and the history of diamond cutting.
Speaking about the event’s success, Saffronart’s co-founder Minal Vazirani commented, “The speakers invited shared their perspectives and elevated the conference to a forum that encouraged an exchange of ideas. Attendees had access to perspectives which cannot be found anywhere else, and the conference introduced a new generation to India’s contribution to landmark jewellery techniques.”
Saffronart’s Exhibition of Fine Jewels follows the conference and is on view at their Mumbai premises until 17 October. The stunning showcase includes exceptional diamonds and coloured gems, Mughal-inspired pieces and important contemporary jewels, building on India’s 5,000-year legacy of fine jewellery design that shows no sign of slowing down.