Sunday, April 21, 2013

Precious Time: Lacloche Frères Watch, 1930

Watch, 1930
The Victoria & Albert Museum

This strange and beautiful watch of gold, platinum, enamel, brilliant and rose-cut diamonds, sapphires, jadeite, black-backed chalcedony, pearl and silk is the work of the French firm Lacloche Frères and dates to about 1930. The contrast of the red and the black materials in this watch shows the influence of Oriental lacquer on Art Deco jewelry. This is further evidenced by the floating stylized flowers which were also a theme of textile design of the period. 

Lacloche Frères were among the many upmarket jewelers on the rue de la Paix in Paris. The company was initially founded in Madrid in 1875, later opening branches in Saint-Sébastien, Biarritz, and f London. One of their best-known pieces was the tiara made in 1930 for the Duchess of Westminster.

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