WOOD IN FINE JEWELLERY: SILVIA FURMANOVICH’S MARQUETRY COLLECTION
As soon you get a look at some of these new pieces from Brazilian designer Silvia Furmanovich, you’ll appreciate why I always make a point of stopping by her boutique whenever I am in São Paulo. Opening the doors is always like stepping into the perfect jewellery box of day and evening jewellery, showcasing an extraordinary talent of more than 15 years. That’s Silvia Furmanovich and you’ll probably remember her from when I last raved about her jewellery in my article, 10 Things To Know About Brazilian Jewellery Style.
What struck me about Silvia’s jewellery is how every piece is so bold and daring. The size of the pieces echo the depth of Sylvia’s imagination and there’s a natural sense of beauty brought together in a harmony of different elements. A beautiful fusion of copper, wood, gold and gemstones staged amongst carvings and magnificent marquetry, an exotic collection of time-travelled experience created through the eyes of a goldsmith’s daughter in love with the natural world. What do you think of my curated collection? So many shapes, sizes and colours to choose from!
SHOP THE LOOK:
This time I’m in London at the Berkeley Hotel with Silvia Furmanovich’s son and designer, Alexandre to choose the best pieces from the new Marquetry collection. The first thing I noticed is how lightweight and comfortable these jewellery pieces are to wear. The light indigenous woods salvaged from the rainforest floor give them this quality and add a layer of tone and texture, accented beautifully with precious gems, gold and diamonds. Gemstones like amethyst, citrine, topaz, peridot, moonstone, beryl, prasiolite, fire opal, garnet and smoky quartz bring to life the colours of the tropical flowers of the rainforest.
WHAT IS MARQUETRY?
A decorative art borrowed from the ancient art of Italian marble inlay, marquetry is a much respected skill adopted by the cabinetmakers of Antwerp at the beginning of the 16th Century.
Alexandre and I discussed this ancient art of marquetry over a lovely cup of tea, and talked about its influence on this new line of haute jewellery. He told me the Marquetry collection began to take shape after Silvia’s trip to Acre, Brazil’s Westernmost state, where she met the skilled craftsmen who master the art of marquetry using native wood. While the end result looks seamless, marquetry is actually a painstaking process of assembling hand-cut wooden veneer shapes from found objects in the forest.
The practice of marquetry is a sustainable art form, as the craftsman use only the raw materials they find in the rainforest! This just adds another element of beauty and wonder to the whole design. It’s a cornucopia of colour and various woods that give the pieces in this collection such vibrancy and lustre.
These beautiful salvaged woods include Muirapiranga (red), Tatajuba (yellow), Louro Abacate (Green), Roxinho (purple) and Azul Carvalho (blue). To enhance the woods’ natural beauty, a proprietary system of washing and soaking the wood in water and minerals brings out the wonderful bold and earthy tones of the rainforests of Brazil.
GEMOLOGUE by Liza Urla features exquisite global discoveries, trendy urban street style, exclusive interviews and rare jewellery reviews – a celebration of fine jewellery, fashion jewellery and vintage jewellery.
*Photographed by Julia Flit. Styling and Art Direction by Liza Urla.
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