Monday, November 4, 2013

Amidst the City No.1

"Diamond's Are a Girl's Best Friend: A Bulgari Affair"

by Angelic Roman

The infallible words, most memorably crooned by Marilyn Monroe, "Diamond's are a girl's best friend", cannot but be recalled anytime jewelry is discussed. In this case, not just any jewelry, but the highly esteemed Italian jewelry presented to humankind by Bulgari since 1884.

This past weekend I was able to attend The Art of Bulgari: La Dolce Vita & Beyond, 1950–1990 exhibit held at the De Young Museum here in San Francisco. With a visual feast of emeralds, rubies, sapphires, and diamonds galore, what was a girl to do but buy the souvenir pencil case? 

Indeed this memento shall have to suffice till I can accessorize with the real thing.  The exhibit itself was marvelously presented with high-tech effects to boot. Most memorable of all was a blank book in which words would "magically" appear as you flipped the pages, illustrating some of Bulgari's most intricate pieces. 

Bulgari was started in 1884 by Sotirio Bulgari, who specialized in silver. However, it wasn't until after World War II that the company really found success with its precious stones and quality craftsmanship.  By the 1950's the company had earned such prestige that it quickly became regular among Hollywood's elite, most notably Elizabeth Taylor. 

Jewelry always takes on intrigue amidst the scandals of romance. The exhibit made it a point to present some of Ms.Taylor's pieces, mostly tokens from her love affairs.

Below is the emerald necklace gifted to Ms.Taylor by Richard Burton.

This "Tremblant" brooch was one of my dear favorites. The piece seems to spark to life with tiny springs placed under each stone so that it trembles when worn. 

Indeed the exhibit was a feast for the eyes and dreams with its only fault being its brevity. After finding myself at the end, the only thing I could really do was: plan my return, perhaps in the morning with coffee a la Holly Golightly. 

The exhibit runs till February 2014, for more information visit The De Young Museum website.

Jewelry Pictures from De Young Website.

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