Designed as five annular discs composed of 'Tissu Milanais' mesh, each embellished with a raised stylised fan motif in polished gold, within a matt gold textured surround, 1960s, maker's mark for Georges Lenfant, French assay marks for gold. 18cm long. 98 grams.
Note: As with all incredible skill, it’s appearance is effortless. Each link is composed of 'Tissu Milanais', a highly skilled process of hammering surfaces of gold mesh to create a design in relief. In essence, this technique existed since the early 20th century but it took Lenfant to work out how to do it AND it still have flexibility…and it’s this sumptuous flexibility that makes these examples so exquisite….
There have been countless superlative craftsmen over the centuries that history has forgotten as so rarely did they become known outside of their trade, and these bracelets are the perfect example of why we have striven since our Masterpiece exhibition in 2017, when we unveiled a collection that we had accumulated over the previous 3 years, to be part of those attempting to make the Lenfant workshop become an exception to this rule...
Jacques Lenfant and his workshop were highly respected within the art world as he executed jewels for artists such as Fernand Léger, iconic designs such as the Hermes ‘Chaine d’ancre’, as well as jewels for Cartier, Bulgari, Van Cleef & Arpels and René Boivin. Jacques Lenfant was also president of the ‘Groupe des Bijoutiers', president of the Jewellery trade association, officer of the Legion d’Honneur, and awarded the Grand Prize of the President of the Republic for works of art in 1980. His interest in the history of chain work, and desire to preserve the art, lead him to agree to publish two books, both invaluable texts on jewellery history and the art of Goldsmith chain-work.
Jacques Lenfant had an encyclopaedic knowledge of his craft and his dedication to historical research coupled with an obsessive dedication to be original is the magic combination I’ve often proposed is the formula to be a great jeweller.
Literature Cf. Jacques Lenfant, Le Livre de la Chaine, Editions Scriptar SA 1996, P.110 for a photo of this model.