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Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Space Age Jewelry Creations

Tampa Necklace by Van Cleef & Arpels, white and yellow gold, diamond, sapphire, garnet, spinel and beryl. View at Forbes Galleries, March 16 - Sept. 7.

Lately, my inbox has been filling up with jewelry inspired by the heavenly bodies in the universe. As if aliens entered my e-mail, dropped off these images and left just as mysteriously. Why this is happening at this time I can’t say for sure. But these beings left behind some interesting jewelry as well as a notice of an upcoming exhibition at Forbes Galleries featuring jewelry influenced by outer space.

Pair of earclips by Tiffany & Co., 1962, gold, red coral. View at Forbes Galleries, March 16 - Sept. 7.

The exhibition titled, Out of This World! Jewelry in the Space Age, at the gallery on 60 Fifth Avenue (at 12th Street) will open March 16 and run through September 7. Curated by Elyse Zorn Karlin, co-director of The Association for the Study of Jewelry and Related Arts, It will include objects from more than 100 designers and lenders.

The Love that Moves the Sun & the Other Stars ring by Donna Distefano, 22k gold, meteorite and diamond. View at Forbes Galleries, March 16 - Sept. 7.

The images in this story include items that are part of the Forbes Galleries exhibition along with other pieces that have crossed my desk under the same theme. 

Moon landing pendant by Van Cleef & Arpels, 1969, yellow gold, ruby. View at Forbes Galleries, March 16 - Sept. 7.

Covering a variety of space-related themes through the context of materials and design, the exhibit includes vintage memorabilia and art objects relating to space. Jewelry with space motifs from the Georgian period through contemporary work as well as jewelry made from materials that come from outer space, such as: tektite, meteorite, pallasite, moldavite and moissanite. It will include works by Van Cleef and Arpels, Cartier and Tiffany & Co., along with established jewelry artists. 

Time Traveler Constellation cuff by Jason McLeod, 14k yellow, 18k yellow gold, platinum and turquoise. View at Forbes Galleries, March 16 - Sept. 7.

Among the exhibition highlights is the Van Cleef and Arpels’ Tampa Necklace, featuring detachable space-themed component parts, from a private collection. Another item from the famed Parisian luxury jewelry house is the Lunar Landing pendant, which was made to commemorate the first walk in space. Sputnik, Halley’s Comet, moon, star and planet-themed jewelry will also be seen, with abundant examples in fine and costume jewelry.

Horizon Pendant by Jacob Albee, 18k gold, 24k gold, ibeon meteorite, Tahitian pearl, white diamond, champagne diamond. View at Forbes Galleries, March 16 - Sept. 7.

There also will be other items that straddle the boundaries of art, jewelry and thematic objects. Among them is an an 18K gold Lunar Landing Module replica created by Cartier, designed to celebrate the first walk by man on the moon. Three of them were created for the astronauts that flew on the Apollo 11 mission and were gifts from Le Figaro newspaper. The one in this exhibition was given to astronaut Michael Collins. 

Rocket ship brooch, unknown maker, 1960s, platinum and diamonds. Lang Antiques, San Francisco. View at Forbes Galleries, March 16 - Sept. 7.

There will also be a unique watch on display made for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which tells the time on Mars. 

Shooting Star by Parulina, champagne diamond pave and 18k gold.

Jewelry that has been flown in outer space includes Ed White II’s West Point ring, worn in space, which will be donated to West Point after the exhibition ends. White is the first person to walk in space. Jewelry worn and flown in space by astronaut Cady Coleman will be on view. Coleman has flown in two space missions, which includes spending 159 days on the International Space Station as a member of Expedition 27. 

Milky Way Collection pendant by Nina Basharova, 18k gold. $2,150 retail.

On loan from Beads of Courage, will be "flown in space" beads. The organization is dedicated to providing programs and support for children coping with serious, life-threatening illnesses. 

Stargazer Pendant by What's Your Sign? 12 diamond "starz" surrounded by a universe of brilliant sapphires (2.2 ctw.) on a sapphire strand. $2,849 retail.

Other items include Donald Claflin’s Man in the Moon clip earrings for Tiffany & Co., which once belonged to Gloria Vanderbilt, as well as Bjorn Weckstrom’s “Princess Leia Necklace,” named because Carrie Fisher wore the same one in the awards ceremony scene in the first Star Wars movie. There also will be jewelry fashioned from materials created for the space race, including pieces made of: polymer, nitinol, dichroic glass, titanium and fiber optic glass.

Please join me on the Jewelry News Network Facebook Page, on Twitter @JewelryNewsNet and on the Forbes Website.

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