The renaissance of Suzanne Belperron : an interview with Olivier Baroin

[section_title title= »Portfolio: some of the most beautiful pieces Belperron that have for sale in recent years »]

Suzanne Belperron holds a special place in the jewelry market. Overall, Belperron jewelry is reaching stellar prices at auction, but in reality, there is no benchmark applicable to Belperron. The buyers judge each piece according to the significance of the jewel. That is, they judge and buy each piece according to its aesthetic value and its place in the cannon of Suzanne Belperron. These criteria are very similar to those applied to the market for painters or visual artists.

Christie’s Paris. 2011.

Here is an additional selection of some remarkable jewels that have been on sale in recent years and that Olivier Baroin has appraised.

AGUTTES

Lot 91. June 2016. Important platinum ring composed of a large curved ring set with rubies and small diamonds. Maker’s mark  for Groené & Darde is partially readable. Sold with box. This ring was made between 1942 and 1955. Estimate: 20,000 – 25,000 EUR. Hammer price: 116,025 EUR
Lot 143. June 2014. Chalcedony and grey cold ‘barrel’ clip set with six old cut diamonds, with lines of black enamel at side. Circa 1935. Sold with a B.HERZ box. Estimate: 15,000 – 20,000 EUR Hammer price:  61,200 EUR.

 

Lot 89. Sale December 2016 ‘Dome’ ring in 18k yellow gold set with an important cushion-cut citrine and gold, honey and cognac colored citrines set in a honeycomb setting.honey or cognac. Circa 1953. Estimate: 25,000-30,000 EUR Hammer price: 67,575 EUR
Lot 83. December 2017. A pair of 18k white gold pendant earrings (750) composed of 3 tiers of frosted rock crystal domes, each with a band of diamonds set in platinum from which a drop–shaped pearl is suspended. Accompanied by certificate LFG N ° 325647 certifying the pearls are saltwater in origin. Accompanied by a certificate by Mr Olivier Baroin attesting that it is a creation of Suzanne Belperron dating from prior to 1935. Estimate: 15 000 – 20 000 EUR. Hammer price: 255,000 EUR

ARTCURIAL

A U-shaped lapel clip in platinum (950) and 18k white gold (750), set with brilliant cut diamonds, finished with two button-shaped pearls, one white and the other gray. Maker’s mark for Groëné et Darde. Executed between 1942 and 1955. Estimate: 15,000 – 20,000 EUR. Hammer price: 96,100 EUR
‘Important Jewelry’, July 23, 2014. Lot 741.  A rare pair of platinum (950) ‘Christmas Tree’ pendants. The design of each features diamond-set long arched leaves, each punctuated with 9 brilliant cut diamonds and the base of the trees are set with baguettes. Executed between 1942 and 1955. Maker’s mark for Groëné et Darde. Estimate: 120,000 – 150,000 EUR. Hammer price: 121,500 EUR
‘Important Jewelry’, July 23, 2014. Lot 740. In 18k (750) white gold bracelet, featuring a beveled edge, adorned with a line of baguette cut diamonds between two lines of brilliant cut diamonds. The edges of the bracelet are lined with pear-shaped settings each set with two brilliant-cut diamonds. Executed between 1942 and 1955. Maker’s mark: Groëné et Darde. Estimate: 40,000 – 60,000 EUR. Hammer price: 155,100 EUR.
July 19, 2016.  Lot 651 Pair of ‘Spiral’ lapel clips. One in 18k (750) and platinum (950) white gold, set with a half-cut diamond in a spiral pave setting with brilliant-cut diamonds, the other in 18k yellow gold (750) of the same design, set with yellow, brown or Madeira diamonds. Maker’s mark for Groëné et Darde. Circa 1938-39. Fittings on the reverse of the clips allow them to be joined and mounted on a necklace in yellow gold and gray gold.  Estimate: 40,000 – 50 000 EUR. Hammer price: 105,920 EUR.
January 19, 2017. Lot 401.  ‘Egyptian’ bib necklace in yellow gold and 18k white gold (750) formed of a solid circle in a fall, highlighted by a line of old-cut diamonds. The bib is attached by two long loops to the back of the necklace. Circa 1942.  Maker’s mark for Groëné et Darde. In a box labeled B. Herz. Provenance: Ms. Arman Salacrou, academician and playwright. Estimated 30,000 – 40,000 EUR. Hammer price: 77,500 EUR
« Egyptian » clip and its original plaster cast. Personal archives of Suzanne Belperron. Archives Olivier Baroin.
January 19, 2017. Lot 402. A stylized paisley « Egyptian » clip in 18k (750) yellow gold and 18k white gold set with a ruff of diamonds. Circa 1937. Maker’s mark for Groëné et Darde. Estimate: 10,000 – 15,000 EUR. Hammer price: 14,300 EUR.

CHRISTIE’S

Paris Jewels, 19 May 2010. Lot 228. Featuring a stylized cornucopia of amatiated yellow gold set with cabochon emeralds and old-cut diamonds holding an old pale yellow oval diamond weighing 32.80 carats, French gold markings. Circa 1950. Estimate: EUR 160,000 – EUR 200,000. Price realised: EUR 553,000
Paris Jewels, 1 June 2016. Lot 81. Pair of « seashell » clips. Each contained a shell paved with old cut diamonds and enhanced with a line of black enamel (accidents), around 1935, gross weight: 25.09 gr., Platinum (850) and 18K gray (750), French punches. Wear the hallmark of the company Groëné & Darde. « The shell is a new kind of jewellery because it is eternal. But these are entirely of human invention, being made from diamonds, black enamel and crystal. They can be worn as clips, as a brooch or even to support four strings of pearls, making this a superb piece of evening jewellery ». New jewellery, Vogue Paris, September 1933. Estimate: EUR 40,000 – EUR 60,000. Price realised: EUR 85,500
Paris Jewels, 24 November 2015. Lot 166. Pair of diamond clips. Each adorned with two patterns set with round diamonds wrapped around a larger diamond and enhanced by a line of baguette diamonds, gross weight: 48.86 gr., Platinum setting (850) and 18K gray gold (750), french punches Wear the hallmark of the Groene & Darde Company for Suzanne Belperron. Estimate : EUR 80,000 – EUR 120,000. Price realised: EUR 111,900
Jewels for Hope: The Collection of Mrs Lily Safra. Geneva, 14 May 2012. Lot 30. The central scalloped swirl centering upon a circular-cut diamond collet and extending a rigid cuff, set with diamonds and enhanced by a line of calibré-cut sapphires, 1941-1945, inner diameter 6.0 cm, with French assay mark for platinum With maker’s mark of Groene et Darde (partially indistinct) for Suzanne Belperron Estimate CHF 74,000 – CHF 110,000. Price realised CHF 159,000.

DROUOT

On Wednesday December 17, 2014 Drouot presented this sumptuous necklace and bracelet achieved a record price. Estimated between 10,000 and 20,000 EUR this parure flew for 415,000 EUR. This set is characteristic of the Belperron style, with its volumes and delicate shades of velvety blue stones selected by the designer.

Large white gold lozenge-shaped articulated bracelet set with cabochon sapphires of varying hues. Executed circa 1935. Gross weight: 163 g. Length: 17 cm. Width: 9 cm. Accompanied by a certificate of origin Ref. No. 141122b Belp / Ppl / De, dated November 22, 2014 by Mr. Olivier Baroin.
White gold bib necklace entirely set with cabochon sapphires. Executed circa 1935. Gross weight: 136 grs. Slight damage to the clasp.  Accompanied by a certificate of origin Ref. No. 141122a Belp / Ppl / De, dated November 22, 2014 by Mr. Olivier Baroin.

FORTUNA

On April 25, 2018, Fortuna Auction in New York sold an exceptional collection of Belperron jewelry from the Bokara « Bo » Legendre estate.

Lot 58. Rock crystal convertible cuff and brooch. A rock crystal flower brooch, circa 1935, set in platinum, displaying cabochon rubies weighing a total of approximately 5.90 carats, and round brilliant-cut diamonds weighing a total of approximately 0.20 carat, with I-J color and VS clarity; can be worn as a brooch fastened by double pinstems or attached to an 18K white gold cuff; flower diameter measures 1-5/8 inches, cuff inner circumference measures 6 inches, with 3/4 inch breach; total weight 50.70 g. Accompanied by an attestation from Mr. Olivier Baroin . Stamped: French assay marks on brooch. Estimate: $30,000 – $50,000. SOLD $78,125

 

Lot 61. A carved chalcedony leaf motif bombe ring, featuring three old European-cut diamonds set in platinum, the center diamond weighing approximately 1.65 carats, flanked by two diamonds weighing approximately 1.00 carat each, for a total diamond weight of approximately 3.65 carats, with K-L color and VS-SI clarity.  Estimate: 10,000 – 15,000 USD. Hammer price: 65,625 USD.
Lot 60. A carved chalcedony fan clip set with marquise diamonds set in platinum. Estimate: 20,000 – 30,000 USD. Hammer price: 62,500 USD
Lot 59. A modified gold and diamond ring, fashioned from one of a pair of earrings created by Suzanne Belperron. Estimate:  4,000 – 6,000 USD. Hammer price: 16,250 USD

Lot 58A. A gold cuff, set with citrines and diamonds. Made in circa 1945, this bracelet features at its center a 160-carat octagonal brilliant-cut citrine, surrounded by two trapezoidal citrines of mixed size weighing – approx. 14 cats each. The gems are separated rows of round brilliant-cut diamonds that have a total weight of approx. 2.50 carats. Estimate: 30,000 USD to $ 50,000 USD. Hammer price: $ 150,000

SOTHEBY’S

Magnificent jewels & Noble jewels, 15 november 2018, Geneva.

LOT 168. Gold and emerald clip, Suzanne Belperron, 1930s. Composed of textured gold centering an oblong drilled emerald bead, French assay mark for gold and maker’s mark for Grœné et Darde, later added pendant loop. Formerly in the collection of Ganna Walska (1887-1984). The Polish-born opera and concert singer, had a personality as large as her fortune. Married six times over the course of her lifetime, she had acquired an extraordinary collection of jewelry. Estimate 30,000 — 50,000 CHF (29,814 – 49,690USD). LOT SOLD : 60,000 CHF (59,627 USD)

Magnificent jewels & Noble jewels, 15 may 2018, Geneva.

Lot 205. Rock crystal and diamond bracelet, ‘Bibendum’, Suzanne Belperron, circa 1930. Composed of circular carved rock crystal plaques inset with circular-cut diamonds, alternating with single-cut diamond links, length approximately 180mm, French assay marks for gold and platinum. Estimate 70,000 — 90,000 CHF (69,938 – 89,921USD) LOT SOLD : 106,250 CHF (106,157 USD)
Lot 203. Blue chalcedony and sapphire clip, Suzanne Belperron, circa 1940. Of fluted design, the carved blue chalcedony highlighted at the center with three rows of sapphire beads, French assay marks for gold and maker’s mark for Groëne et Darde. Estimate 20,000 — 30,000 CHF (19,982 – 29,974USD). LOT SOLD : 65,000 CHF (64,943 USD)

Magnificent jewels & Noble jewels, 15 november 2017, Geneva.

Lot 213. Pearl and chalcedony ring. Polished engraved chalcedony set with a cultured pearl. Estimate 8,000 — 12,000 CHF (8,108 – 12,162 USD). LOT SOLD : 22,500 CHF (22,805 USD)

Magnificent jewels & Noble jewels, 16 may 2017, Geneva

Lot 66. Gold and yellow sapphire brooch, circa 1940. Of stylised floral design, collet-set with two oval yellow sapphires, French assay and maker’s marks. Estimate 12,000 — 18,000 CHF (12,064 – 18,097 USD). LOT SOLD : 21,250 CHF (21,364 USD)

Magnificent jewels & Noble jewels, 17 november 2016, Geneva

Lot 195. Chalcedony, cultured pearl and natural pearl brooch, circa 1955. Of foliate design, set with a carved chalcedony of leaf motif, the branches decorated with natural and cultured pearls, French assay mark, maker’s mark for Groene et Darde. Estimate 70,000 — 100,000 CHF (69,843 – 99,776 USD). LOT SOLD : 81,250 CHF (81,068 USD)

Magnificent jewels & Noble jewels, 11 november 2015, Geneva

Lot 23. Topaz bangle, circa 1935. Designed as four silver bands swing set with collet-set cushion-shaped, circular-cut and oval light blue topaz, smaller inner circumference approximately 125mm, French assay and partial maker’s marks. Originally purchased by Elsa Schiaparelli from Suzanne Belperron. Schiaparelli admired Suzanne Belperron’s creations for their simplicity, the avant-garde combination of jewels and stones, and their sheer modernity. She was photographed in Vogue magazine in 1933 wearing several Belperron jewels. Throughout the 1930s, Belperron and Schiaperelli creations were used in photo spreads in all the leading fashion magazines. The archives of these two creators reveal many of the same clients: opera singer and socialite Ganna Walska, Daisy Fellowes, Indian Princess Karam of Kapurthala, Mrs. Harrison Williams (the future Countess Mona Bismarck) and the Duchess of Windsor. In Sotheby’s catalogue note. Estimate 39,000 — 59,000 CHF (38,867 – 58,799 USD). LOT SOLD : 212,500 CHF (211,775 USD).
Lot 440. Quartz and diamond brooch, 1940s. Designed as fluted smoky quartz between lines of cushion-shaped diamonds. Estimate 8,000 — 12,000 CHF (7,973 – 11,959 USD). LOT SOLD : 52,500 CHF (52,321 USD).
Lot 443. Smoky quartz, yellow sapphire and citrine brooch, circa 1935. Collet-set with variously shaped yellow sapphires and citrines to a fluted smoky quartz jewel, French assay mark and maker’s mark for Groëné & Darde. Estimate : 30,000 — 49,000 CHF (29,898 – 48,833 USD). LOT SOLD : 93,750 CHF (93,430 USD)

Magnificent jewels & Noble jewels, 12 may 2015, Geneva

Lot 3 .Star sapphire, chalcedony and diamond ring, Suzanne Belperron, 1961 The blue chalcedony ring set with a blue star sapphire framed with a petal-like border of single-cut diamonds. Estimate : 9,000 — 11,000 CHF. (9,664 – 11,812 USD). LOT SOLD : 40,000 CHF (42,953 USD)

TAJAN

On June 29, 2015, the expert Jean-Norbert Salit presented at auction a rare set of four pieces in white gold, diamonds and rubies (of certified Burmese origin and with no trace of heat treatment). Circa 1936 with a maker’s mark for Groëné et Darde.

Lot 262. An 18K white gold platinum domed ruby cuff set with rubies and brilliant-cut diamonds. Estimate: 40,000-60,000 EUR. Hammer price (incl. fees): 180,700 EUR
Lot 264.An 18K white gold and platinum stylized shell clip set with brilliant-cut diamonds and oval rubies and featuring a cabochon ruby. Frame in. French made, workshop mark of Groënéet Darde. Estimate: 20,000 – 30,000 EUR. Hammer price (incl. fees): 102,320 EUR.
Lot 263. Pair of platinum pendant earrings, each adorned with a cabochon ruby ​​and set with diamonds and featuring gadroons on the outer edge. Estimate: 15,000-18,000 EUR. Hammer price (incl. fees): 45,000 EUR.
Lot 265.A platinum ring features three large gadroons. The outer gadroons are pave-set with brilliant-cut diamonds and the central gadroon is set with an oval-cut ruby. Estimate: 30,000-40,000 EUR. Hammer price (incl. fees): 72,800 EUR.
Tajan, June 21, 2016. Lot 74. Dome ring decorated with a large cushion-cut sapphire (5,80-6 carats) originating from Ceylon and no heat treatment. The body of the ring is pave-set brilliant-cut and round diamonds punctuated with cabochon sapphires. Platinum frame. French work, with the maker’s mark for Groëné et Darde. Circa 1947. Estimate: 40,000-60,00 EUR. Hammer price (incl. fees):  111,800 EUR.

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My thanks to Aguttes, Artcurial, Christie’s, Drouot, Eve, Fortuna, PB & A, Sotheby’s and Tajan.

Special thanks to Olivier Baroin who combines, as few others do, the precision of an expert and the passion of a pedagogue.

And finally, my warmest thanks to Claudine Seroussi for her beautiful translation.

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La Golconde
Galerie d’Olivier Baroin
9, Place de la Madeleine. 75008 Paris.
Tél. 01 40 07 15 69

Sotheby’s.

Suzanne Belperron, Sylvie Raulet et Olivier Baroin, La Bibliothèque des Arts , 2011.

Les bijoux de Suzanne Belperron, Patricia Corbett, Ward and Nico Landrigan, Karl Lagerfeld, Thames & Hudson, 2015.

Jewels from the personnal collection of Suzanne Belperron, Geneva 14 may 2012, catalogue Sotheby’s

Vente bijoux, créations Suzanne Belperron, catalogue Pierre Bergé et Associés, mai 2004

Claudine Seroussi. Instagram : Artofthejewel

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