Lot 253. An Art Deco enamel and diamond Chinoiserie bracelet, by Verger Frères, circa 1920. Estimate USD 30,000 - USD 50,000. Photo Christie's Images Ltd 2016.
Designed as an articulated black enamel band, each panel accented by gold images of Chinoiserie motif, joined by rose-cut diamond links, centering upon a reversible pierced single-cut diamond plaque, the reverse red enamel band with similarly designed panels accented by gold images of floral motif, circa 1920, 7 ins., with French assay marks for platinum and 18k gold; With maker's mark for Verger Frères, nos. 1210 and 1227.
Notes: Founded by Ferdinand Verger in 1872, Verger Frères quickly established itself as a Parisian company that produced finely crafted jewels, watches, clocks and ornaments. At the turn of the century and throughout the 1920s, the house incorporated new elements of style into their craftsmanship and contributed to the shift from Art Nouveau to Art Deco design.
Lot 253 exhibits Verger’s skillful ability to fuse prevalent themes of the Art Deco movement: motifs inspired by the Far East, linear and geometric patterns, and vibrant color. This reversible bracelet displays gold Chinoiserie floral and scenic patterns and centers upon a diamond-set shou plaque, the symbol of longevity. The plaque rotates on an axis allowing it to be seen from either enamel side when worn.
The patterns are cohesive on each side of the bracelet and reminiscent of decorative Chinese panel screens. The individual rectangular enamel tablets add a linear and geometric element, juxtaposing the delicate curves of the gold pattern within each of their frames. The use of bold red and black enamel sharply separates the bracelet from the softer colors of the preceding Art Nouveau era.
This bracelet embodies the exceptionally crafted jewels produced by Verger Frères at this time, jewels that were not only revered by the house’s contemporaries but collectors to come.
Christie's. Sale 12182, Important Jewels, 18 October 2016, New York, Rockefeller Plaza