Facebook

Celia Harms Mexican silver gilt Etruscan Pin Pendant Torque Necklace

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

Last year I was lucky to find three examples of jewelry by Celia Harms, a talented designer who lived and worked in Vera Cruz in the 1950s and ’60s. The Etruscan style sterling vermeil cross pin / pendant necklace I am presenting is the last of that trove and a very classy duo as well. I am very particular with vermeil – I don’t really like it unless it is old and has mellowed almost to the point of … extinction yet here it has an understated matte finish that exudes a calm warmth. The workmanship on the pin/pendant is exceptional with layers of overlay accented by beading, wirework and the style’s telltale little florets. The torque itself is so elegant, I think I might be tempted to even wear it alone – yet it lends itself to being combined with other pendants as well…   Size/Weight: 15 1/4″ inner circumference (including the 1...

Pineda style modernist Mexican silver and citrine Pendant Necklace with black velvet cord

By in Mexican and Latin American, Necklaces |

Stunning Taxco modernist sterling silver pendant necklace this set seems to borrow stylistically from both Antonio Pineda (in its use of the black velvet cord) and the Los Ballesteros workshops (in featuring that huge gemstone). The signature it bears, however, attributes it to a listed yet still unidentified Mexican maestro whose work I have had before but about whom we don’t really know that much. The pendant’s good weight, sweeping, free-flowing curves and the crown-set citrine (according to my gem-tester) are only enhanced by the company of the supple black velvet cord with its sterling spherical tips. Slick, mod, elegant and a pleasure to wear and to behold…   Size/Weight: pendant is 3 3/4″ long by 1 1/4″ wide; velvet cord is just shy of 31″ end to end; 47.0 grams Hallmarks / Date: maker’s initials “ERE” as well as...

1950s Nestor Mexican silver and color-change sapphire Necklace

By in Mexican and Latin American, Necklaces |

A listed early Taxco maestro who kept creating jewelry in the post-1948 period Nestor was not as prolific as some of his contemporaries yet his work was always of very high quality as were the materials that he used. During his career he tried his hand at several styles and techniques and some of his pieces are truly eye-catching. In the necklace presented here he seems to venture into the design universe of Margot de Taxco and the Los Castillo. Beading, cutwork, oxidation and hand-chased details combine in this complex sterling central station accented by a big, crown-set color changing corundum (synthetic sapphire). The gem is faceted, changes color from deep amethyst to a steely purple under different light conditions and it is a treat for the eyes. Last but not least, the links forming the chain are riveted to each other which bespeaks the necklace’s quality…  ...

rare Antonio Pineda Mexican 970 silver Necklace ~ knot with pearls

By in Mexican and Latin American, Necklaces |

An extremely rare Antonio Pineda necklace this modernist beauty I am presenting here is wrought in his favorite fine .970 silver alloy, oxidized in the design’s recesses and embellished with ten gorgeous, luminous soft white pearls. Cascading from an elaborate knot that forms the necklace’s central station, the pearls rest graciously on the collar bone and they look fantastic against a black background. Shown on p. 147 in “Silver Seduction”, the official catalogue for Pineda’s retrospective exhibition at UCLA’s Fowler Museum in 2008, the necklace is one of those designs that appear very rarely and, in my opinion, should be considered a treasured find. Elegant, expressive of Antonio’s genius yet freed from the bulkiness that characterizes some of his creations, the necklace is articulated and crafted in such a way as to gingerly sit rather than...

Los Ballesteros Mexican silver and citrine Pendant Necklace ~ modernist sunburst

By in Mexican and Latin American, Necklaces |

A modernist sunburst created by combining shadowbox and cut-outs that surround a big, beautiful faceted pale lemon-colored gemstone is the theme of the vintage Los Ballesteros Mexican mid-century pendant necklace at hand. This early Taxco workshop never ceases to amaze me with their stunning, bold designs and their originality even after all these years of buying, selling and studying vintage Mexican jewelry. Their pendants and glorified hinged “bangle” bracelets are, I believe, their most inspired work – carefully crafted using high quality gemstones (in our case a citrine as indicated by my gem-tester), silver with generous thickness and meticulously finished. The chain in the set is of the same period and extraction yet signed by a different maker, listed but still unidentified. I think the two were meant to be together…   Size/Weight: pendant is 2 1/2″...

Antonio Pineda Mexican silver black onyx “crescents” Necklace

By in Mexican and Latin American, Necklaces |

Stunning Antonio Pineda Mexican modernist silver and black onyx necklace, this too is wrought in the maestro’s favorite fine, .970 alloy in a variation of his “crescents” design. There isn’t much one can say about Antonio jewelry, at least not more than a few good photos can say, but let me express my admiration for the magical way he articulates his creations so as to sit perfectly where they should and at the same time showcase the design’s sculpturality in the best possible light. I have to admit that I like this specific version of the “crescents” in necklace form more than his cascading bib. There is something solid, no jokes about it but it is also so mod and slick and elegant…   Size/Weight: approx. 15″ long (wearable; it is too difficult to measure accurately so I am judging based on how it sits around my neck) by 3/4″...