European Art comes to Doha
As I mentioned last week, Doha is hosting a number of international exhibitions at the moment, as we move into the winter season. Today we visited the wonderful National Museum of Qatar to see the “Magnificent Jewels of Jean Schlumberger: From the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Collection”.
Jean Schlumberger (1898-1987) was a leading jewellery designer of the 20th century. He was renowned for his fantastical creations inspired by the natural world, particularly gardens and the sea. He was born in France (though at the time the area was part of Germany) and became a popular costume jewellery designer in Paris high society in the 1930s. After the war, he moved to New York, and set up a small studio for himself. In 1956, the president of Tiffany & Co., Walter Hoving, asked Schlumberger to begin designing for the firm. He had his own workshop at the company until his retirement in the late 1970s and was eventually made a Vice-President. He quickly built an impressive client base that included the Duchess of Windsor, Greta Garbo, Gloria Vanderbilt, Elizabeth Taylor and Audrey Hepburn. His designs are still on sale at Tiffany’s and are in high demand.
Rachel Lambert ‘Bunny’ Mellon
The exhibition at NMoQ includes more than 125 pieces from the Rachel Lambert Mellon Collection at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. Rachel Lambert ‘Bunny’ Mellon was an expert in garden design, a philanthropist, and Jean Schlumberger’s most important patron. After her death in 2014, Bunny left the Virginia museum 142 pieces of Jean Schlumberger jewellery and bejeweled objects – now the largest and most comprehensive public collection of works the artist-designer.
Here are some of our favorite pieces: