Musée d'Orsay: René Lalique Poppy

René Lalique

René Lalique (1860-1945)
Gold, silver, polished diamonds; cloisonné, openwork, matte translucent, and glossy opaque enamel
H. 7; W. 23.5; D. 10.5 cm
© RMN-Grand Palais (Musée d'Orsay) / René-Gabriel Ojéda

Pavot [Poppy]

"You would think that this flower would crumple with a puff of wind, because each part seems mobile and alive", commented a contemporary when the work was exhibited at the Salon de la Société des Artistes Français in 1897.

The delicate design is served by dazzling technique. On the end of the silver stem, the gold corolla is coloured with cloisonné and openwork translucent and matte enamel. "From this corolla emerges the head of the poppy, made of dusty blue enamel that a crest of diamonds keeps in the shadow. A large number of stamens end with a drop of black enamel which heightens this rare harmony". The object can be dismantled into seven parts: the stem, four petals, stamens and pistils.

Acclaimed by Emile Gallé as the inventor of "modern jewellery", René Lalique revolutionised jewellery by taking his inspiration from wild flowers and mingling unusual materials such as horn, glass or enamel with the precious stones.

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