Friday, November 22, 2013

Rene Lalique Jewelry - Lisbon, Portugal

As I mentioned in my last post, my husband and I have recently returned from Lisbon, Portugal.  One of the most memorable parts of our trip was a visit to the Calouste Gulbenkian MuseumWhile we loved seeing the paintings by Rubens, Rembrandt, Rousseau, Manet, Dégas, Renoir and Monet, the highlight, for me, was a permanent collection of works by René Lalique (1860-1945). 

Lalique was an extraordinarily prolific and talented French designer, known for his Art Nouveau and Art Deco designs in glass, enamel, jewelry and home decor. Wikipedia states that his name became "synonymous with creativity, beauty and quality".  I pretty much have a major jewelry crush on the man and I'll try to show you why today.

My husband and I took a couple hundred pictures of the Lalique Collection.  So far I've only sorted through about a third of them.  So this will just give you a taste of the scope of the collection.  Perhaps I'll do another post as I finish sorting through the rest of the pictures.
Lalique's works were inspired primarily by what were called The Three Fs: Female (form), Fauna and Flora.
 A careful observer of nature, many of Lalique's works include plants and a variety of animals.
Woodland Scene
He did not consider any animals to be repulsive or out of bounds: snakes, parrots, grasshoppers and beetles are found in both his glass-works and in his jewelry.

I love the swirl of the peacock's tail (see close up in center picture).  The last picture is a drawing Lalique did in planning this piece.
Check out the size of the amethyst in the cockerel's mouth!

This amazing Serpent Pectorial was originally worn with with a strand of pearls draped from each serpent head

Lalique was also inspired by the female form. Much of his work, including his flora and fauna, exhibit the voluptuous curves associated with a woman's body.
Take a look at that mammoth baroque pearl on the left!  Wow!
 The artist pictured women as being gentle and mysterious.  His work featured graceful female nudes whose highly stylized curling hair often swirls sensuously around the object, becoming a design component itself. It is those flowing, graceful, and often asymmetrical lines that so draw me to his work. 

I hope you have enjoyed this little tour.  I look forward to sharing more with you later.



  1. Absolutely stunning!! And I'm sure the pictures are nothing compared to the real thing. I bet you were in heaven seeing all these beauties in person!!! Thank you for sharing your experience.

  2. OooohMG!! I think I would have hyper-ventilated at this exhibit - Ooooh! Look at this, Ooooh, look at that. Love it! Can't wait to see more of your photos!

  3. Thank You so much for sharing this man's amazing work I loved every piece!! Can't wait to see more of them !! Thank you again !!

  4. Amazing work! I really did not know much about Lalique until you mentioned seeing his work recently. Really enjoyed this post!

  5. I was looking forward to this post, I'm a huge fan of Lalique jewellery, you'd have had to drag me screaming from a room full of it!

    Thanks for a great post, can't wait to see more!

  6. Thanks for sharing about this artist! The next best thing to actually being there. Can't wait to see how his work inspires yours.


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