Lot 140
  • 140


250,000 - 350,000 USD
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Of pendeloque design, set with numerous old European and single-cut diamonds, the top composed of carved coral, accented by cabochon emeralds, further set with two old European-cut diamonds weighing 3.81 and 3.51 carats,  suspending a carved emerald bead surmounted by a diamond-set cap, further highlighted by coral segments, calibré-cut emeralds and seed pearls, signed Cartier; circa 1925.


In good condition given the age of this piece, with surface abrasions to the mounting commensurate with age. Possibly numbered 2026 on mounting behind buckle-shaped coral segment; the numbers have each been struck multiple times and are difficult to read. Mounting tests as platinum. The diamonds (not including the 3.81 and 3.51 carat diamonds) weighing a total of approximately 6.40 carats, are approximately E-G color, predominantly VVS-VS clarity. The oval cabochon emerald weighing approximately 9.10 carats is bluish green, strongly saturated, and heavily included with some surface-reaching inclusions. The fluted emerald bead measuring approximately 19.1 x 18.7 x 13.8 mm, is medium bluish green, heavily included with some surface reaching inclusions including cavities visible under 10x magnification. The buckle-shaped coral segment is medium orangish red, evenly colored, with one minute polyp or drill hole. The other coral segments and beads are red-orange/orange-red, predominantly evenly colored, a few with faint lighter banding. The seed pearls are in good condition, with very good skin and luster. Overall length approximately 7 inches. Accompanied by two GIA reports: No. 6187896078 dated December 4, 2017 stating that the diamond weighing 3.81 carats is E color, VVS2 clarity. No. 2183901037 dated November 29, 2017 stating that the diamond weighing 3.51 carats is F color, VS2 clarity. Potential bidders who intend to export this lot are advised that certain permits are required for export. If you are interested in this lot, please contact the Jewelry Department before bidding.
In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective qualified opinion. Illustrations in the catalogue may not be actual size. Prospective purchasers are reminded that, unless the catalogue description specifically states that a stone is natural, we have assumed that some form of treatment may have been used and that such treatment may not be permanent. Our presale estimates reflect this assumption.Certificates of Authenticity: Various manufacturers may not issue certificates of authenticity upon request. Sotheby's is not under an obligation to furnish the purchaser with a certificate of authenticity from the manufacturer at any time. Unless the requirements for a rescission of the sale under the Terms of Guarantee are satisfied, the failure of a manufacturer to issue a certificate will not constitute grounds to rescind the sale. Gemological Certificates and Reports: References in the catalogue descriptions to certificates or reports issued by gemological laboratories are provided only for the information of bidders, and Sotheby's does not guarantee and accepts no responsibility for the accuracy, terms or information contained in such certificates or reports. Please also note that laboratories may differ in their assessment of a gemstone (including its origin and presence, type and extent of treatments) and their certificates or reports may contain different results.NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING CONDITION OF A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF SALE PRINTED IN THE CATALOGUE.

Catalogue Note

No. 6187896078 dated December 4, 2017 stating that the diamond weighing 3.81 carats is E color, VVS2 clarity.No. 2183901037 dated November 29, 2017 stating that the diamond weighing 3.51 carats is F color, VS2 clarity.

Potential bidders who intend to export this lot are advised that certain permits are required for export. If you are interested in this lot, please contact the Jewelry Department before bidding.

Of all the works produced by Cartier since its founding in 1847, it is their dazzling creations from the Art Deco period that epitomize the firm's unparalleled innovation, style, and craftsmanship. Instantly recognizable and timeless in design, Cartier's Art Deco jewels represent one of the great highpoints in the history of jewelry.

Cartier's emergence into Art Deco's bold, new aesthetic may be attributed in large part to the artistic vision of Charles Jacqueau (1885-1968), a pioneering designer who revitalized the staid, Victorian themes of the previous century with vivid colors and stylized foliate motifs drawn from Indo-Persian art and architecture. Throughout the 1920s and 30s, his Eastern-inspired jewels were all the rage in Paris, London, and New York. Cartier's renowned tutti frutti design from this period is the crowning example of synthesizing Mughal aesthetics and Western workmanship: cuff bracelets and collar necklaces were set with Indian-style carved rubies, sapphires, and emeralds to create a brilliantly colored carpet of fantastic gems.

This pendeloque is another illustration of the firm’s marriage of Eastern and Western influences. A rare discovery, the piece is a notable contribution to the published canon of Cartier jewels. Its lithe, columnar form—originally intended to drape off the shoulder—was inspired by the Indian sarpech, a jeweled turban pin that dangled like a tassel over the eyebrow. According to historian Hans Nadelhoffer, Cartier discovered the sarpech form indirectly through the fanciful orientalist costumes of the Ballets Russes, transforming theatrical fantasy into some of the most popular decorative motifs of the period. In a nod to contemporary fashion, this piece's attenuated silhouette and highly articulated diamond-set panels echo the increased mobility of drop-waist flapper dresses designed to swing along to the exuberant tones of the Charleston. Further, the graphic geometry of the piece as a whole is strongly architectural: the triangular coral and diamond projections are evocative of the winged roofs of far Eastern pagodas, simultaneously prefiguring New York's iconic Chrysler Building. Returning consistently to its Indian inspiration, the large and beautifully carved emerald bead at the bottom recalls the onion-domed finials of the Taj Mahal.

As much as the piece emphasizes dynamic construction, it draws balance from allusions to the natural world. While Art Deco designs frequently matched sapphires and emeralds, imitating the "peacock" color pairing of Indian jewelry, this pendeloque uses vibrant coral and verdant emeralds to create a warm color palette suggesting the exotic flora and fauna of far-flung locales. The piece terminates in a delicate cluster of pearl and coral beads, pointing to the "cluster of grapes" motif used to represent pleasure in Persian and Mughal miniature paintings. Thus, this jewel derives its sense of sumptuous luxury from the perfect harmony between composition and color, construction and organicism.

What distinguishes the piece as quintessentially Cartier is its exceptional fabrication. Hardly any of the incredibly supple platinum skeleton is visible to the viewer, and wherever possible the structure itself is rendered decorative, as is demonstrated by the coral stirrup and loop at either end of the piece. Even the tiniest details are of the highest quality, such as the pair of dainty emeralds framing the large, vibrantly colored central cabochon. The old European-cut diamonds, each exceeding three carats, are exceptionally limpid and clean, presenting an excellently matched pair. From the details to the raw materials, this pendeloque is a striking and rare example of Cartier's highly coveted Art Deco creations.