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Brooch

  • Place of origin:

    London (made)

  • Date:

    1978 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Devlin, Stuart CMG, AO, born 1931 (designer and maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Gold, white gold, sapphires, diamonds and black pearls

  • Credit Line:

    Gift of Joan Hurst through The Art Fund

  • Museum number:

    M.19:1,2-2006

  • Gallery location:

    Jewellery, Rooms 91 to 93, The William and Judith Bollinger Gallery, case 37, shelf B, box 6 []

With the exception of the portrait miniature, the use of the human form in jewellery is seldom purely representational. In the 1970s aspects such as humour, eroticism and symbolism were also present. Stuart Devlin's 'eye' brooches add a note of surrealism.

In the sixties a group of jewellers based in London were in many ways ahead of their time. Working within the mainstream market for precious jewellery, they experimented with contemporary designs and materials. They explored new methods of applying gold and devised unconventional shapes for settings.

For women in high society this jewellery offered a new way of expressing wealth and status. What counted were creative expression and individuality, not big flashy stones and material values. Diamonds were no longer the only gemstone to be a 'girl's best friend'.

Stuart Devlin, born in Australia, was awarded a scholarship to study at the Royal College of Art, London in 1958 and afterwards at Columbia University in the USA. After an interim stay in Australia he moved to London where he opened a workshop in 1965. Devlin has designed jewellery, silver, trophies, coinage, medallions, furniture and interiors.

Devlin began designing jewellery in 1967 and was granted the Royal Warrant of Goldsmith and Jeweller to Her Majesty the Queen in 1982.

Stylistically he moved from his early Scandinavian style or Bauhaus approach to objects with rich ornamentation. Devlin developed various processes for texturing metal surfaces and using filigree ornament.

Physical description

Pair of brooches in the form of two blue eyes, the pupils are black pearls, the irises are of sapphires and diamonds, the whites of diamonds. The outer edge is of ridged gold.

Place of Origin

London (made)

Date

1978 (made)

Artist/maker

Devlin, Stuart CMG, AO, born 1931 (designer and maker)

Materials and Techniques

Gold, white gold, sapphires, diamonds and black pearls

Marks and inscriptions

'SD' and London hallmarks for 1978
on each

Dimensions

Length: 2.6 cm, Height: 1.6 cm

Descriptive line

Pair of brooches in the form of two blue eyes, by Stuart Devlin, London 1978.

Materials

Gold; White gold; Sapphires; Diamonds; Black pearls

Subjects depicted

Eyes

Categories

Jewellery; Europeana Fashion Project

Collection

Metalwork Collection

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