cartier's legacy comes to life in sparkling frida escobedo-designed show at museo jumex

cartier's legacy comes to life in sparkling frida escobedo-designed show at museo jumex

‘cartier design: a living legacy’ lands in museo jumex, mexico 

 

Mexico’s Museo Jumex presents ‘Cartier Design: A Living Legacy,’ an exhibition that travels across the jewelry brand’s history through a selection of its most iconic gems. Curated by Ana Elena Malet and designed by architect Frida Escobedo, the show uncovers more than 160 pieces from the legendary Cartier Collection, as well as private collections and archival documents, inviting the public to delve into the evolution of the brand’s style, its distinctive language, design, and savoir-faire. More importantly, this exhibition, running from March 15 to May 14, 2023, also marks Cartier Collection’s return to Mexico, 24 years after a first presentation at the Palace of Fine Arts.

 

The exhibition studies Cartier’s design, as well as its craftsmanship, and shows a contemporary view without losing sight of its rich, complex past. […]The pieces presented in ‘Cartier Design: A Living Legacy’ are extraordinary watches, jewelry, and decorative objects. In this way, they testify Cartier’s heritage, its historical importance, and its relevance today. This heritage continues to inspire Maison’s new generations of designers, who pay tribute to it, keep it alive in its distinctive pioneering spirit, and reimagine it for the present and the future,‘ comments the museum. 

cartier's legacy comes to life in sparkling frida escobedo-designed show at museo jumex
María Félix photography by Ignacio Castillo wearing her ‘Snake’ necklace commissioned from Cartier Paris in 1968

image © Ignacio Castillo

 

 

delving into five distinctive themes 

 

The Cartier exhibition at Museo Jumex delves into five distinctive themes: The Early Years and the Birth of a Style; Universal Curiosity; Jeanne Toussaint’s Taste; Measuring Time and Wearing Beauty; María Félix and the Icons of Elegance. The story of Jeanne Toussaint is a definitive highlight of the exhibition’s narrative.

In fact, Toussaint became the Maison’s first female creative director in 1933 and brought Louis Cartier’s vision into a permanently evolving society. Other thematic focal points include the Maison’s iconic codes and styles, such as the panther and the garland style, as well as motifs inspired by different world cultures, like Ancient Egypt, India, Asia, and the Middle East.

cartier's legacy comes to life in sparkling frida escobedo-designed show at museo jumex
‘Cartier Design: A Living Legacy’ | image courtesy Museo Jumex

 

 

Moreover, deep documental research of the Cartier Archives at Museo Jumex reveals the Maison’s creative process and tells the story of characters who acquired and wore these incomparable jewelry pieces. Besides silver screen diva María Félix, an absolute symbol of national elegance and a loyal Cartier style believer, relevant Latin American figures include José Yves Limantour, Porfirio Díaz’s minister of Finance, and Brazilian aviator Alberto Santos-Dumont.

cartier's legacy comes to life in sparkling frida escobedo-designed show at museo jumex
image courtesy Museo Jumex

 

 

Another spotlight points to Cartier Collection’s history which began nearly 50 years ago when the Maison embarked on a mission to recover iconic pieces signed by Cartier. In 1983, the Cartier Collection was born, reflecting the Maison’s savoir-faire, cultural legacy, and rich history. With a selection that travels back to the 1850s and until the 21st century, the Cartier Collection has borne witness and been a participant in history, featuring pieces exclusively made for royals, socialites, and celebrities like María Félix and Barbara Hutton. Today, it continues to grow and boasts more than 3,000 pieces.

museo-jumex-cartier-designboom-full

image courtesy Museo Jumex

A public and educational program will launch alongside Cartier Design: A Living Legacy, bringing Cartier’s art to diverse audiences through several academic tools. The exhibition is accompanied by a catalog, edited by Fundación Jumex and Rizzoli. ‘In this way, the exhibition confirms Cartier’s significance in the cultural landscape. The pieces exhibited here are design objects consciously constructed with mastery and excellency. Their production is based on heritage and traditional processes, while at the same time, it incorporates new research and production methods, as well as technological advances,’ concludes Museo Jumex. 

cartier's legacy comes to life in sparkling frida escobedo-designed show at museo jumex
image courtesy Museo Jumex

cartier's legacy comes to life in sparkling frida escobedo-designed show at museo jumex
María Félix in Deauville photographed by Lord Snowdon in 1980. She is wearing her ‘Crocodile’ necklace commissioned from Cartier Paris in 1975 and leaf ear clips created by Cartier Paris in 1967 and altered in 1976 | image © Lord Snowdon

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‘Snake’ necklace | Cartier Paris, special order, 1968 | Cartier Collection

cartier's legacy comes to life in sparkling frida escobedo-designed show at museo jumex
design for a bracelet | Cartier Paris, 1934 | graphite and gouache on tracing paper | Cartier Paris Archives

cartier's legacy comes to life in sparkling frida escobedo-designed show at museo jumex
‘Snake’ necklace | Cartier Paris, special order, 1968 | Cartier Collection

cartier's legacy comes to life in sparkling frida escobedo-designed show at museo jumex
design for a ‘Scarab’ belt buckle | Cartier Paris, 1926 | graphite, indian ink and gouache on tracing paper | sold to Mrs. Cole Porter | Cartier Paris Archives © Cartier

cartier's legacy comes to life in sparkling frida escobedo-designed show at museo jumex
‘Snake’ pair of ear clips | Cartier Paris, special order, 1971 | Cartier Collection

cartier's legacy comes to life in sparkling frida escobedo-designed show at museo jumex
design for a tiara | Cartier Paris, circa 1906 | proposal for an execution in platinum and diamonds graphite and gouache on tracing paper | Cartier Paris Archives © Cartier

museo-jumex-cartier-designboom-09

‘Crocodile’ necklace | Cartier Paris, special order, 1975 | Cartier Collection 

 

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'Bangle' | Cartier Paris, special order, 1934 | Cartier Collection
'Bangle' | Cartier Paris, special order, 1934 | Cartier Collection
'Bangle' | Cartier Paris, special order, 1934 | Cartier Collection
'Bangle' | Cartier Paris, special order, 1934 | Cartier Collection
'Bangle' | Cartier Paris, special order, 1934 | Cartier Collection
'Bangle' | Cartier Paris, special order, 1934 | Cartier Collection
'Scarab' belt buckle | Cartier Paris, 1926 | provenance: Mrs. Cole Porter | Cartier Collection
'Scarab' belt buckle | Cartier Paris, 1926 | provenance: Mrs. Cole Porter | Cartier Collection
'Pyramid' clip brooch | Cartier Paris, special order, 1935 | Cartier Collection
'Pyramid' clip brooch | Cartier Paris, special order, 1935 | Cartier Collection
'Tutti Frutti' strap bracelet | Cartier Paris, 1925 | provenance: Mrs. Cole Porter | Cartier Collection
'Tutti Frutti' strap bracelet | Cartier Paris, 1925 | provenance: Mrs. Cole Porter | Cartier Collection
'Tiara' | Cartier Paris, special order, 1905 | provenance: Mary Scott Townsend and Mrs. Ronalds McElroy | Cartier Collection
'Tiara' | Cartier Paris, special order, 1905 | provenance: Mary Scott Townsend and Mrs. Ronalds McElroy | Cartier Collection
image courtesy Museo Jumex
image courtesy Museo Jumex
image courtesy Museo Jumex
image courtesy Museo Jumex
image courtesy Museo Jumex
image courtesy Museo Jumex
design for a 'Tutti Frutti' bracelet | Cartier Paris, 1927 | graphite, Indian ink and gouache on tracing paper 6 x 21 cm | Cartier Paris Archives © Cartier
design for a 'Tutti Frutti' bracelet | Cartier Paris, 1927 | graphite, Indian ink and gouache on tracing paper 6 x 21 cm | Cartier Paris Archives © Cartier

 

exhibition info:

 

name: Cartier Design – A Living Legacy 

location: Museo Jumex | @museojumex, Mexico 

curator: Ana Elena Malet 

architect: Frida Escobedo | @fridaescobedo

running dates: March 15 – May 14, 2023 

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