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Elna Mexican Deco silver and stone Pin Brooch ~ portrait of a Mandarin

By in Brooches, Mexican and Latin American |

Elna is a name in Mexico’s 20th c. Silver Renaissance I have learned to look for over the years. We don’t really know much about them – what is new, right? – but my experience with their jewelry allows me to say that their creations are more often than not impressive in proportions, the quality of materials used very high, their craftsmanship commendable and their designs quite pleasing to the eye. In the case of the figural brooch at hand Elna veers away from traditional Mexican “mask” jewelry into the realm of 1930s-40s stereotypical representations of the “Far East”. Carved out of dyed calcite the portrait of the obviously Asian man is shown wearing a 19th c. Chinese mandarin hat, his eyes rendered in the most exaggerated manner, holding a proverbial fan…   Size / Weight: 3″ tall by 2″ wide; 40.5 grams Hallmarks...

Chato Castillo for Ingrid’s Mexican silver fan Pendant Necklace

By in Mexican and Latin American, Necklaces |

The signatures of Chato Castillo and Ingrid’s combine on this exquisite Mexican Deco silver fan pendant necklace – neither is a a common occurrence and both are synonymous with imaginative design and high quality. Chato is reported to have been the driving adventurous force behind most of the Los Castillo innovations – the revival of ancient techniques, the experimentation with materials – while Ingrid’s still remains among the elusive early Taxco retailers. Monumental in its proportions, the pendant is inspired by motifs of the Spanish Colonial tradition, with heart cut-outs, floral overlay and beading. The chain I have paired it with matches those proportions perfectly and even though not Mexican and of a later period, it looks as if it was always meant to be part of the necklace…   Size / Weight: pendant is 3″ tall (without the bail) by...

Hans Hansen Denmark silver and onyx modernist Ring

By in Rings/earrings, US/European |

Architectural in a dramatic yet also minimalist way, this Hans Hansen sterling silver ring does not come up very often. Set on a cylindrical post its tambour-shaped face holds a polished round black onyx disk within it. The transition from sterling to stone is seamless, the surfaces of the two materials “married” to each other in the most perfect way, while the tambour’s sides are reflected in the simple wide shank. Wearable art indeed…   Size / Weight: sz 6.5 US (can be easily re-sized); face is 3/4″ in diameter; 1/2″ rise; 17.8 grams Hallmarks / Date: maker’s signature as shown as well as “925S” and “DENMARK”; 1960s-70s Condition:excellent vintage with impressive presence, great patina and no damage or repairs noted Inv.#14599 Offered at $350.00 Contact us about this...

Peruzzi style Italian Deco 800 silver griffin Pendant Necklace

By in Necklaces, US/European |

Attached to an ornate chain with fluted beads, floral and della Robbia “swaddled baby” links this early 20th c. Italian silver pendant features a mighty griffin held among flowering vines in a round frame. Renaissance Revival jewelry of this type were very popular with European and American visitors to Italy returned home with them as mementos of their Grand Tour. Though our example is not signed for maker, it is very well made, with good detail in the pendant’s casting that allows the mythical creature to emerge from its surroundings and a great sampling of the genre’s best link motifs forming the long chain…   Size/Weight: pendant is just shy of 1 1/2″ in diameter and adds a 1 3/4″ drop to the chain; chain itself is 25 3/4″ long (please note that there is no clasp – the chain is continuous but long enough to allow you to slip...

early Taxco Deco Mexican 980 silver “mask” Pin Brooch

By in Mexican and Latin American, Pins/brooches, Uncategorized |

Big Mexican Deco carved “mask” brooch, this is a piece wrought in high purity, .980 silver as is often the case with early Taxco jewelry. I love pieces from that period not only because of the fine alloy used to make them but also because they have the forceful presence that characterizes all works created in the beginnings of a movement. Yet it is also the specific maker that intrigues me. Sometimes this hallmark is attributed to Raphael Melendez but mistakenly so. I suspect that this maestro must have worked for Spratling, basing my hypothesis on the fact that up until the brooch presented here, all the jewelry by him I have had was based on Spratling designs. They were all in the “archeological” style, very well made and generous in proportions. This is the first example that breaks the rule – though the silver work framing the carved stone is indeed reminiscent of early...