My jewels are propositions. From the outset, this involves making an object that constructs itself out of many different things, and that sometimes ends up surpassing even what I had imagined for it. It is no longer primarily an accessory; it becomes something larger. It speaks about concept and form as opposed to objective value. It becomes sculpture. –Victoire de Castellane
Victoire de Castellane is exhibiting these glittering new artworks at the Gagosian outpost on Madison Avenue in New York. In 2007, she embarked on this independent practice as a sculptor of unique precious objects. Thinking through the paradox of wearable jewels, which when not worn are hidden away from view, de Castellane has conceived rings, bracelets, and necklaces as components of small tabletop sculptures for perpetual contemplation –needless to say, by very rich individuals. She uses materials like no one else with a kind of wacky irreverence. These beautiful baubles, for people with the means to appreciate them at home, are on par with the Russian Czars trinkets (think Fabergé eggs). Essentially self-taught, de Castellane lives and works in Paris. She attempted to make her first piece of jewelry at the age of five — she designed (costume) jewelry for Chanel for fourteen years. In 1998, she joined Dior as the first Creative Director of their new jewelry department, where she continues to this day. One wonders, who is backing this very expensive sculptural enterprise (rich husband/ boyfriend? Dior?) that she is no-doubt a master of. The exhibit runs through April 5, 2014.