CANBERRA.- The National Gallery of Australia’s extraordinary exhibition—featuring many of the world’s greatest jewels—opened in Canberra on 30 March. Cartier: The Exhibition includes the tiara loaned to Catherine Middleton on her wedding day by Her Majesty The Queen, Grace Kelly’s engagement ring and Elizabeth Taylor’s ruby and diamond necklace, along with some of the most exquisite pieces from the stunning Cartier Collection. 

Featuring more than 300 works of art, the exhibition showcases outstanding necklaces, brooches, tiaras, watches and ornaments, alongside rarely seen archival drawings, photographs and ephemera. Co-curated by Margaret Young-Sánchez, formerly Chief Curator of Denver Art Museum and the NGA, the exhibition showcases pieces from the Cartier Collection, museums, institutions and private collectors. 

This exhibition is the most outstanding collection of important jewels Australia has ever seen, and is ever likely to see again,’ said Gerard Vaughan, NGA Director. ‘This is an unmissable opportunity to see masterpieces of this craftsmanship and quality up close.’ 

A remarkable Royal Style section features items generously lent by Her Majesty The Queen, including a brooch with one of the most impressive pink diamonds in the world, jewellery worn and owned by Princess Margaret and Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, and the famous Indian Tiara owned by The Duchess of Gloucester. 

Cartier’s legacy is synonymous with clients like the Duchess of Windsor, Princess Grace of Monaco, Mexican film star María Félix, and the indomitable queen of jewellery, Elizabeth Taylor. The greatest Australian celebrity at the turn of the 20th century, Dame Nellie Melba—a devoted Cartier client—is also a feature of the exhibition. 

We are honoured to collaborate with the NGA on this exhibition,’ said Pierre Rainero, Director of Image, Style and Heritage at Cartier. ‘The vision of Cartier’s creative force, Louis Cartier, is further realised by the aesthetic and content of this one-of-a-kind exhibition through its innovation and style in presenting not only the jewels, but also the social context surrounding their history.’ 

30 Mar – 22 Jul 2018


Cartier, Paris, Scroll tiara 310316, 1902; silver, gold, cushion-shaped, round old- and rose-cut diamonds, millegrain setting, Cartier Collection © Cartier


Cartier, Paris, Lily stomacher brooch 310510, 1906; platinum, round old- and rose-cut diamonds (millegrain setting), Cartier Collection © Cartier


Cartier, Paris, Stomacher brooch 310513, 1907; platinum, one pear-shaped sapphire, seven cushion-shaped sapphires, round old- and rose-cut diamonds, millegrain setting, Cartier Collection © Cartier


Cartier, Paris, Brooch 310662, 1907; platinum, round old- and rose-cut diamonds, millegrain setting, Cartier Collection © Cartier.


Cartier, Paris, Model A mystery clock 317100, 1918; platinum, gold, nephrite, rock crystal, four sapphire cabochons, rose-cut diamonds, enamel, Cartier Collection © Cartier.


Cartier, London, Scarab brooch 312993, 1925; gold, platinum, round old- and single-cut diamonds, ruby, emerald, citrine and onyx cabochons, Egyptian faience, Cartier Collection © Cartier.


Cartier, New York, Chimera mystery clock 312995, 1926; gold, platinum, citrine, agate, nephrite, onyx, coral, rose-cut diamonds, pearls, emerald cabochons, enamel rectangular 8-day movement, gold-plated, 15 jewels, biametallic balance, Breguet balance spring, Cartier Collection © Cartier.


Cartier, New York, Bracelet 316956, 1927; platinum, round old-, brilliant- and single-cut diamonds, one engraved hexagonal sapphire (59.39 carats), leaf- and oval-shaped carved sapphires, buff-top and calibré-cut sapphires, sapphire cabochons, emerald cabochons, buff-top and calibré-cut emeralds, Cartier Collection © Cartier.


Cartier, Paris, Necklace 317098, 1928; platinum, old- and rose-cut diamonds, one cushion-shaped yellow zirconia, four white zirconias, 13 white topazes, two synthetic rubies, one smoky quartz, one citrine, Cartier Collection © Cartier


Cartier, Paris, Tutti Frutti strap bracelet 316958, 1929; platinum, brilliant- and single-cut diamonds, leaf-shaped carved sapphires, emeralds and rubies, sapphire and emerald cabochons, ruby beads studded with collet-set diamonds, Cartier Collection © Cartier.


Cartier, London, Necklace 312998, 1932; platinum, round old- and rose-cut diamonds, one cushion-shaped polished emerald (143.23 carats), Cartier Collection © Cartier.


Cartier, Paris, Necklace 317099, 1934; platinum, gold, 27 imperial jadeite beads, baguette- and single-cut diamonds, buff-top calibré-cut rubies, Cartier Collection © Cartier.


Cartier, London, Halo tiara 310333, 1936; platinum, 739 brilliant-cut and 149 baton diamonds. Collection of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II © Royal Collection Trust/All Rights Reserved


Cartier, Paris, Reversible Basculante wristwatch 317102, 1936; yellow gold, pink gold, leather rectangular LeCoultre caliber 111 movement with cut corners, rhodium-plated, 2 adjustments, 18 jewels, Swiss lever escapement, bimetallic balance, flat balance spring, Cartier Collection © Cartier.


Cartier, London, Necklace and bracelet 317097, 1936; necklace: platinum, round old and baguette-cut diamonds, one emerald-cut peridot, emerald-cut peridots (63.48 carats); bracelet: platinum, round old and baguette-cut diamonds, one emerald-cut peridot (68.93 carats), cabochon and square faceted peridots, Cartier Collection © Cartier


Cartier, Paris, Hindu necklace 312996, 1936 / 1963; platinum, white gold, marquise-, baguette- and round old-cut diamonds, thirteen briolette-cut sapphires (146.90 carats), two leaf-shaped carved sapphires (50.80 and 42.45 carats), sapphire beads, one sapphire cabochon, square carved emeralds, fluted and smooth emerald beads, emerald cabochons, leaf-shaped carved rubies, smooth and engraved ruby beads, ruby cabochons, each emerald, ruby and sapphire bead is studded with a collet-set diamond. Cartier Collection © Cartier.


Cartier, London, Tiara 311670, 1938; platinum, diamonds, aquamarines, millegrain setting, National Collection of Qatar, Qatar Museums Authority © Cartier.


Cartier, London, Rose clip brooch 316657, 1938; platinum, baguette-, round-, old- and single-cut diamonds, Cartier Collection © Cartier


Cartier, Paris, Flamingo brooch 312983, 1940; platinum, gold, brilliant-cut diamonds, calibré-cut emeralds, sapphires and rubies, sapphire cabochons, one citrine, Cartier Collection © Cartier


Cartier, Paris, Bib necklace 312985, 1947; twisted gold, platinum, brilliant- and baguette-cut diamonds, one heart-shaped faceted amethyst, twenty-seven emerald-cut amethysts, one oval faceted amethyst, turquoise cabochons, Cartier Collection © Cartier


Cartier, Paris, Necklace, bracelet and pari of earrings 316661, 1951; platinum, gold, brilliant=baguette- modified baguette- and fancy-cut diamonds, cushion-shaped and round faceted Burmese rubies, Cartier Collection © Cartier.


Cartier, Paris, Necklace 312997, 1951 / 1953; platinum, gold, round brilliant-, baguette- and fancy-cut diamonds, eight cushion-shaped and oval faceted Burmese rubies, Cartier Collection © Cartier.


William DARGIE, Portrait of Queen Elizabeth II 316551, 1954, oil on canvas, Parliamentary Art Collection, Canberra © Cartier


Cartier, Paris, Crocodile nekclace 312988, 1975; gold, 1023 brilliant-cut fancy intense yellow diamonds (60.02 carats), two navette-shaped emerald cabochons, 1060 emeralds (66.86 carats), two ruby cabochons, Cartier Collection © Cartier.