18 karat gold, colored stone, diamond and enamel pendant-brooch, Georges Fouquet, circa 1910. Photo Sotheby's
Set in the center with an egg-shaped cabochon turquoise, framed by fan-shaped lotuses applied with turquoise-colored, green, black and white enamel, accented by rectangular-shaped and fancy-shaped topazes, and white opal segments, supporting a pear-shaped white opal pendant, the top framed by small rose-cut diamonds, signed G. Fouquet, numbered 2349. With rose-colored leather, silk and velvet box signed G. Fouquet, 6. Rue Royale, Paris. ESTIMATE 60,000-80,000 USD
NOTE: For an example of Georges Fouquet's work in the Egyptian revival style see Les Fouquet: Bijoutiers & Joailliers à Paris 1860-1960, by Marie-Noël de Gary, p. 88, Bague Sarabée and Bague Mouche, and p. 89, Fleur de Lotus. Egypt's influence on the West goes back as far as ancient Roman times. Although this influence never disappeared completely, it rose to a peak after certain historical events such as Napoleon's campaign in Egypt at the end of the 18 th century and the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869. Events such as these allowed for a deeper, often first hand knowledge of Egyptian culture and mythology and a wider availability of design sources both direct and indirect. Art Nouveau artists were not immune to the lure of ancient Egypt as the two jewels by Georges Fouquet offered here can attest. Lotus blossoms and papyrus are more than mere embellishments, their curved forms are integral parts of the design. The predominantly turquoise and green color palette echoes the hues often found in Egyptian faience, scarabs and beads. The overall symmetry of the brooch and comb (lot 256-257) anticipate the Art Deco movement that was eventually to overtake the Art Nouveau style.
Sotheby's. Important Jewels, New York | 09 Feb 2012 www.sothebys.com