Tuesday, 12 November 2013

From Needlepoint Designer To Celebrity Jeweller * Joel Arthur Rosenthal * Metropolitan Museum of Art 20 November 2013 - 9 March 2014

Joel Arthur Rosenthal, the Parisian jeweller now known as JAR, was born in Parkchester in the Bronx, the son of a postal worker and teacher. He studied art at La Guardia (The Fame School) and later transferred to Harvard before taking up residence in Paris.

There, in the late 1960s, JAR and his Swiss partner established a tapestry-needlepoint business with JAR painting the designs. Whatever became of this venture is now hard to trace - but perhaps there is someone out there who has worked one of JAR's needlepoint designs - do let us know!
Later this month Jewels by JAR will be on exhibit at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. More than 300 works will form the first retrospective of his work in America; the only other major exhibition of Rosenthal’s work was held in 2002 at Somerset House in London. The exhibits will be seen by torch light so viewers can experience the sensational fire of these fabulous jewels. The exhibition is made possible by Phaidon Press Limited, Nancy and Howard Marks, and The Ronald and Jo Carole Lauder Foundation.

Very early in his career, JAR revealed his superb sense of colour, whether in the hue of an exotic violet sapphire, the shimmer of topaz and ruby, or the simple clarity of a perfect diamond. His works quickly became known for their unique design, the quality of their stones, and their remarkable craftsmanship, but above all for their fearless beauty. He is known for his pavĂ© technique—the setting of small stones so close together that they appear as a continuous surface of jewels—and uses subtle gradations of colour to create a painterly effect. JAR's one-of-a-kind creations place him among the ranks of history’s greatest jewellers

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