Gianmaria Buccellati

Gianmaria Buccellati

The art of beauty in a unique goldsmith’s collection, to discover.

Gianmaria Buccellati, admired jeweller and creator worldwide, started his eponymous Foundation with his wife in 2008. Now, Rosa Maria Bresciani Buccellati leads it with the aim to conserve and celebrate the extraordinary artistic and cultural legacy of her husband through the ages.

Buccellati's goldsmiths

“Each has his past shut in him like the leaves of a book known to him by heart, and his friends can only read the title.” Virginia Woolf. But what happens if we open those books? Streams of words come out and overwhelm the reader. Unique moments that we should all remember enlight our mind. Like objects locked in vaults, lying there in their silence searching for a light to make them shine again. Art works which are past, but at the same time history, and become synonymous with beauty not held by time. A beauty that is forever.

With the rapid and costant progress of technology, it is always more complex to give the right appreciation to thing, because they can quickly become obsolete. So, there is a growing need to shelter soul and gaze in these ancient pieces created simply for the sake of beauty.

Gianmaria Buccellati
Gianmaria Buccellati

His awareness – of the redeeming power of beauty – was one of the distinguishing characteristics of Gianmaria Buccellati, entrepreneur and creator, son of the Milanese goldsmith Mario Buccellati who was one of the leading names in 20th century Italian jewellery thanks to his first boutique opened next to Teatro alla Scala in 1919.

Later, Buccellati brand was consecrated in the world of international haute joaillerie thanks to the creative skills and leadership of Gianmaria, a charismatic and visionary man. The only Italian maître joaillier in the Parisian Place Vendôme from 1979 until the first decade of the 2000s, Gianmaria Buccellati was able to consolidate a unique style in his creations, strongly rooted in the artistic stylistic elements of the Italian Renaissance and Baroque, bringing back the precious Milanese goldsmith tradition to the contemporary world.

The transparencies of the embroideries reproduced in the tulle openwork, the proportions of the volumes, the uniqueness of the colour plays, and the extraordinary variety of the subjects are some of the characteristics of Gianmaria Buccellati’s creations appreciated in boutiques all over the world, from California to Japan. “I remember him drawing on anything. He was a passionate observer of life and what he observed often served as source of inspiration for one of his masterpieces”, Rosa Maria Bresciani Buccellati said.

Creations by Buccellati

His jewellery was part of the company’s flow: from the drawing to the shop windows, but Gianmaria realised his artistic research creating items that responded to a completely different logic. Profound expert in art, and not just in the goldsmith’s one, Gianmaria Buccellati created a corpus of goldsmith’s works, entitled “Precious Objects”. He didn’t want to sell them, as they were the tangible transposition of an intangible artistic value destined to conquer the challenge of time. Precious cups, enchanting caskets, chalices and urns inspired by Roman finds.

It all started in 1968, when Gianmaria visited the famous Treasure of the Grand Dukes exhibited in the Pitti Palace in Florence. There, he first got the idea of this extraordinary collection: he created the Scrigno Mediceo, a precious decagonal-shaped artefact of two metals, steel and golds, a combination often used in the Renaissance period. From that moment he never stopped creating and he continued to expand the collection with other impressive works of art, later exhibited in some of the most prestigious museums and cultural institutions of the world, including the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto and the Kremlin Museums in Moscow.

In 2014, the halls of Pitti Palace, which inspired him, hosted the exhibition “The Treasures of the Buccellati Foundation”, born from the collaboration between the Gianmaria Buccellati Foundation and the Soprintendenza Speciale per il Patrimonio Storico Artistico e Etnoantropologico e per il Polo Museale della città di Firenze. “He was able to close this circle: he started at Pitti Palace with this idea and with his works donated to the Foundation he made an exhibition there”, Rosa Maria Bresciani Buccellati commented.

goldsmith’s works by Buccellati

Nowadays, the collection of “Precious Objects”, which includes some of Gianmaria Buccellati’s iconic jewellery, is preserved and protected by the Gianmaria Buccellati Foundation that he established together with his wife in 2008. After Gianmaria’s death in 2015, Rosa Maria Bresciani Buccellati is leading the Foundation with the aim to conserve and celebrate the extraordinary artistic and cultural legacy of Gianmaria Buccellati and his father Mario in the international history of goldsmith art and promote the values, artistic, aesthetic and ethical, incorporated in the artworks of its Collection.

A unique collection, with an unparalleled variety of jewels, ornamental objects and original draft drawings expressing the incredible ability to apply the antique goldsmith techniques, the profound knowledge of diverse artistic expressions from which to draw inspiration in order to always design distinctive objects. A unique passion intertwined with one’s personality and events of a lifetime.

gold necklace and earrings designed by Buccellati

His visionary mind and his ability to bring the goldsmith’s art into the world lives today thanks to the Foundation which conserve and promote his artistic collection. It also studies, researches and conserves the goldsmithing and engraving techniques of XVI, XVII and XVIII Centuries. These extraordinary works have no fixed abode, but they are citizens of the world, just like Gianmaria. But, sometimes, there is the desire to find a home. “I would like to find a suitable place for these pieces, it would be great to see them exhibited as part of a permanent museum collection”, concluded the Foundation’s President. These pieces “were his life, his passion”. Beauty cannot be easily put aside, it cannot a record inscribed in a closed book, it must live under the limelight and become common memory. Because true beauty does not only stand the test of time, it’s something that lives free from the space and time concept created by man – it elevates nearly to divine heights, an entity which is forever just like the works of the Gianmaria Buccellati Foundation.

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