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Exquisite jewels dazzle in historic Cartier exhibition at the National Gallery of Australia
Cartier London, Halo tiara 1936. Platinum, diamonds, 3 x 18 cm., lent by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Royal Collection Trust/All Rights Reserved.


CANBERRA.- The National Gallery of Australia’s extraordinary exhibition—featuring many of the world’s greatest jewels—opened in Canberra on 30 March. Cartier: The Exhibition includes the tiara loaned to Catherine Middleton on her wedding day by Her Majesty The Queen, Grace Kelly’s engagement ring and Elizabeth Taylor’s ruby and diamond necklace, along with some of the most exquisite pieces from the stunning Cartier Collection.

Featuring more than 300 works of art, the exhibition showcases outstanding necklaces, brooches, tiaras, watches and ornaments, alongside rarely seen archival drawings, photographs and ephemera. Co-curated by Margaret Young-Sánchez, formerly Chief Curator of Denver Art Museum and the NGA, the exhibition showcases pieces from the Cartier Collection, museums, institutions and private collectors.

‘This exhibition is the most outstanding collection of important jewels Australia has ever seen, and is ever likely to see again,’ said Gerard Vaughan, NGA Director. ‘This is an unmissable opportunity to see masterpieces of this craftsmanship and quality up close.’

A remarkable Royal Style section features items generously lent by Her Majesty The Queen, including a brooch with one of the most impressive pink diamonds in the world, jewellery worn and owned by Princess Margaret and Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, and the famous Indian Tiara owned by The Duchess of Gloucester.

Cartier’s legacy is synonymous with clients like the Duchess of Windsor, Princess Grace of Monaco, Mexican film star María Félix, and the indomitable queen of jewellery, Elizabeth Taylor. The greatest Australian celebrity at the turn of the 20th century, Dame Nellie Melba—a devoted Cartier client—is also a feature of the exhibition.

‘We are honoured to collaborate with the NGA on this exhibition,’ said Pierre Rainero, Director of Image, Style and Heritage at Cartier. ‘The vision of Cartier’s creative force, Louis Cartier, is further realised by the aesthetic and content of this one-of-a-kind exhibition through its innovation and style in presenting not only the jewels, but also the social context surrounding their history.’





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