Cartier treated members of the international press to an early morning tour of the amazing exhibit Cartier: Style and History on Saturday at the Grand Palais in Paris. The exhibition was organized by the Reunion des Musées Nationaux of the Grand Palais, and represents the most extensive showing of Cartier jewelry, watches and decorative arts ever mounted. Just the dazzling display of Mystery Clocks is reason enough to visit this remarkable show, which included more than 600 works created by Cartier during the years from 1847 to the 1970s – including jewelry, watches, clocks, cigarette cases, tiaras, diadems and objets d’art.
The treasures are mounted and displayed, exhibition style, and presented as art history, with accompanying photographs, engravings, fashion magazines, dresses and accessories that place the era of each grouping in context. Highlights included the tiara owned by Queen Elizabeth and worn by Kate Middleton at her wedding to Prince William.The exhibit also includes archival documents and over 300 preparatory drawings, provided by Cartier. Pieces were loaned from private collections, including a brooch owned by Elton John. The pieces on display are supplemented by loans from 18 public institutions, including the Musée des Arts decoratifs, Musée Galliera, bibliotheque national de France and Bibliotheque des Arts decoratifs.
A private dinner was held by Cartier on the evening before the private tour, during which Stanislas de Quercize, Cartier’s worldwide CEO, announced that in its first week, 100,000 visitors toured the exhibition; 200,000 are expected to have toured the show before it closes February 16. He added that this coming week at the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie in Geneva, Cartier will be introducing more than 100 new products – all new works of art that are destined to become Cartier heirlooms and collector’s items. (We will bring you live coverage).