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Tiffany’s opens ‘Vision and Virtuosity’ exhibition in London

By Danielle Wightman-Stone

Jun 13, 2022

Culture |In Pictures

Image: Tiffany & Co.

Tiffany & Co. is celebrating its 185th anniversary and 150 years of the brand being in London with its ‘Vision and Virtuosity’ exhibition showcasing a visual chronicle of the storied jeweller. The immersive exhibit features everything from archival high jewellery designs to Tiffany's famed window displays, AR virtual experiences, and even a room dedicated to the film ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’.

The exhibition at the Saatchi Gallery takes visitors on a journey through jewels, craftsmanship and creativity, featuring more than 400 objects from the jewellery brand’s archives, including the recently acquired Empire Diamond of over 80 carats.

Tiffany’s first presented the ‘Vision and Virtuosity’ exhibition in Shanghai in 2019, and for the London iteration, the jewellery brand has added new additions, including the black satin Givenchy gown worn by Audrey Hepburn in the 1961 ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’ film as she peered into the store windows at Tiffany’s Fifth Avenue flagship in New York.

Image: Tiffany & Co.

Anthony Ledru, president and chief executive officer at Tiffany & Co., said in a statement: “‘Vision and Virtuosity’ tells the extraordinary story of one of the oldest luxury jewellers, through its nearly 200-year history of pioneering creativity, legendary craftsmanship and sourcing of the world’s most extraordinary diamonds and gemstones.

“This exhibition perfectly captures our long-standing heritage in bridging tradition and modernity. We are thrilled to share the world of Tiffany & Co. and our unique high jewellery style with London.

Inside Tiffany’s free exhibition at the Saatchi Gallery celebrating its heritage

The exhibition has seven chapters, each exploring themes that are central to Tiffany’s brand identity, heritage, and creative influence. It starts with an introduction to founder Charles Lewis Tiffany’s legacy, which shares how he launched the now storied brand as a stationery and fancy goods store with 1,000 US dollars borrowed from his father.

Image: Tiffany & Co.

The opening chapter focuses on Tiffany’s creativity with window vignettes inspired by the brand’s iconic window displays, highlighting its most innovative and beautiful jewels. Such as the Jean Schlumberger’s Bird on a Rock brooch gracefully flying over the London skyline, a bejewelled dragonfly perched on Vanderbilt Gate in New York and a sparkly butterfly suspended in a glass jar.

Image: Tiffany & Co.

Next up is the ‘World of Tiffany’ room, which takes visitors through the codes of the House, as well as share the objects that have positioned Tiffany & Co as the global lifestyle jeweller that it is today. Highlights from this chapter includes the original Tiffany Blue Box from the 1800s, alongside a Bone Cuff designed by Elsa Peretti, and Schlumberger’s ‘Fleur de Mer’ clip owned by actress Elizabeth Taylor.

Image: Tiffany & Co.

The third chapter is devoted to the brand’s annual Blue Book high jewellery collection, displaying the retailer’s earliest edition of the annual catalogue dating back to 1845, alongside some of Tiffany’s most prized jewels including an enamelled and bejewelled orchid brooch, an emerald necklace, as well as a dragonfly brooch crafted with opals.

Image: Tiffany & Co.

The exhibition then turns to love highlighting how the brand has become the go-to place to buy an engagement ring. In this immersive section, visitors can try on engagement rings, write love notes that then float around the walls, and watch one of the jewellery brand artisans craft positions loose diamonds in the brand’s signature six-prong setting.

Image: Tiffany & Co.

Tiffany’s also celebrates its pop-culture roots with a room devoted to ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s,’ featuring composer Henry Mancini’s Oscar statuette that he won for ‘Moon River’, alongside Audrey Hepburn’s personal annotated script and the iconic black dress she wore in the film’s opening sequence. There is a life-sized famed New York yellow taxi bursting through the wall, which allows for the perfect Instagram backdrop for visitors.

The chapter dedicated to bling has to be the ‘Miracles of Nature’ room showcasing Tiffany’s reputation for beautiful diamonds and the craftsmanship of its jewellery designs. Highlights include the showstopping reimagined World’s Fair necklace set with the over-80-carat Empire Diamond, named after New York City and a headpiece created for Baz Luhrmann’s 2013 film, ‘The Great Gatsby'.

Image: Tiffany & Co.

The exhibition closes with the legendary 128.54-carat Tiffany Diamond, which has only been worn publicly four times by Hepburn, Beyoncé, Lady Gaga and socialite Mary Whitehouse. Tiffany’s also gives visitors the chance to virtually adorn themselves in the yellow diamond using AR technology.

Image: Tiffany & Co.

Tiffany & Co.’s ‘Vision & Virtuosity’ will be run at the Saatchi Gallery in London until August 19. It is free to attend, tickets just need to be booked via Tiffany & Co’s Exhibition app.

Image: Tiffany & Co.
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