At artgenève, Gübelin Jewellery will be premiering its Flaming Grace cocktail ring as well as a collaboration with the artist Thomas Liu Le Lann. Both works of art, the Flaming Grace cocktail ring along with the glass sculpture: Before Shade and Indifference; Kunstbot IV; Aurora Capsule, draw their inspiration from the inner world of the padparadscha sapphire and will be unveiled at the art fair in Geneva.
Sharing a common inspiration
Under a microscope, coloured gems reveal their unique and spectacular inner life, which arose over the course of millions of years. The art of high-resolution photomicrography allows us to immerse ourselves in the fascinating inner world of the rare padparadscha sapphire from Sri Lanka (9.03 ct, 89 Gübelin Points) and discover its hidden internal beauty. The unique colours, shapes and structures within the gemstone inspire Gübelin Jewellery. Over the course of the art collaboration, Gübelin shared the impressive photo of the padparadscha with Thomas Liu Le Lann, who also provided his own interpretation. Both partners executed their works of art in their own fields, and as a result, the cocktail ring as well as the blown-glass sculpture share the same source of inspiration: The inner world of the padparadscha.
Sapphires glitter in all the colours of the rainbow. Blue sapphires are the best known, but the rarest is the orange-pink variety, which is even referred to under its own name: padparadscha. This highly sought-after gemstone displays a mixture of delicate pink and orange. Its subtle play of colours is reminiscent of a sunrise on Sri Lanka, the island in the Indian Ocean where padparadschas were first discovered.
The inner world of the pink-orange padparadscha sapphire from Sri Lanka of over 9 ct inspired Gübelin Jewellery to create the Flaming Grace cocktail ring. The unique structures and shapes within this superb padparadscha reminded the designers of the elegant plumage of the flamingo. Flamingos are also native to Sri Lanka, the Island of Gemstones, and their elegant stature embodies grace and poise.
This sculpturally crafted cocktail ring is set with the oval padparadscha along with pastel-coloured sapphires and diamonds totalling more than 17 ct in a refined mix of cuts. This gives rise to a multi-faceted play of colours, reflecting both the flamingo’s plumage as well as the sunrise on Sri Lanka.
The warm colour shade of the red gold underscores this symbolism and perfectly harmonises with the pastel-coloured gemstones. The name Flaming Grace refers not only to the flamingo but to the way both artworks were created: born of fire and flame. As with each piece of Gübelin Jewellery, the cocktail ring is also set with a ruby. It is considered the king of gemstones and stands for passion and love. At the same time, it symbolizes Gübelin Jewelleryʼs passion for coloured gemstones. Artistically placed, the iconic ruby lends the ring band set with brilliant-cut diamonds, a glittering red accent surrounded by an organically curved entourage which emulates and reflects the shape of the ring.
Raphael Gübelin, President of the House of Gübelin, explains: “Art and Culture are part of the DNA of our family-run company. We seek to actively contribute to promoting and supporting creativity. It is fully in keeping with our company philosophy to share our inspiration. The artgenève fair offers an exciting venue for an exchange of ideas and inspiration.”
Before Shade and Indifference; Kunstbot IV; Aurora Capsule
With his sculpture “Before Shade and Indifference; Kunstbot IV; Aurora Capsule”, the Geneva-born artist Thomas Liu Le Lann continues his work in the medium of glass.
The piece is reminiscent of objects from 1980s-era space robotics. Here, the sculpture draws on technical objects but without them fulfilling their functions. The choice of colours is based on the padparadscha sapphire with the sculpture consisting of blown glass in translucent pink and opaque orange. In the context of the collaboration with Gübelin Jewellery, Thomas Liu Le Lann’s choice of materials fell on glass, since the artworks share similar technical processes in the way they are crafted, such as melting gold and glass. This relationship is made clear by means of a gold rolling mill from Gübelin Jewellery’s own atelier, which is on display alongside both works of art.
The Xippas Gallery, with locations in Switzerland, France and Uruguay, represents Thomas Liu Le Lann. The multi-disciplinary artist translates personal experiences in the form of auto-fictional poems, paintings and sculptures. His works address themes of gender identity, disarm masculinity and elevate the progressive traits of gentleness, fragility and passivity. Thomas Liu Le Lann explains: “Within the framework of this collaboration, I wished to create a formal answer to the jewellery world by working with blown glass in order to create an intricate form that flickers between two clear colours, orange and pink. This sculpture is a fantasized object, quasi-divine, which could generate a sapphire in its centre thanks to a miraculous force.”
Thomas Liu Le Lann designed the booth at the fair, presenting a further facet of the artistic collaboration and lending it an additional layer of meaning. The sculpture, jewellery and the rolling mill are displayed on a white pedestal resting on green legs. The colour green pervades the entire stand design as a leitmotif. It is reminiscent of the green jungles of Sri Lanka while at the same time underscoring the orange-pink shades of the padparadscha cocktail ring as well as the sculpture. Green velvet upholstered lounge furniture invites visitors to discover the artistic collaboration in a leisurely setting.
Whether as jewellers, gemmologists or watchmakers, the company’s Deeply Inspired Philosophy has always guided the House of Gübelin to dive deeper into its metiér, to make new discoveries and to combine beauty and knowledge in an incomparable manner. The creations from Gübelin Jewellery are also inspired by the inner world of coloured gems, combining beauty, knowledge and the highest levels of artisanship. Gübelin shares this inspiration with creative artists from the broadest range of disciplines. Through art collaborations, Gübelin Jewellery promotes young talents and offers an exciting stage for upcoming and highly promising artists.
Gübelin Jewellery is once again a partner of the artgenève art fair, which is being held for the tenth time. Since its inception, it has established itself as an institution on the Swiss art scene. The international fair offers an extensive programme of modern and contemporary art. The personal atmosphere promotes exchange between art enthusiasts and exhibitors.
The art collaboration will be on display from 3–6 March 2022 at the Palexpo in Geneva. During the four-day artgenève, art lovers can discover both the glass sculpture “Before Shade and Indifference; Kunstbot IV; Aurora Capsule” by Thomas Liu Le Lann as well as the Flaming Grace cocktail ring from Gübelin Jewellery.