10 Feb Girl with a Pearl Earring by Vermeer – Eternal beauty
Why ‘Girl with a Pearl Earring’ is so fascinating
The ‘Girl with a Pearl Earring’ by the Dutch master Johannes Vermeer is one of the most famous paintings in the world. No one knows exactly who the girl was, who has managed to enchant every spectator for more than 350 years. The girl’s gaze is defiant, but also questioning; a little sad and at the same time sparkling. Because of this masterfully painted expression, the girl is also called the ‘Mona Lisa of the Netherlands’.
From 10 February to 4 June, 2023, she will be the guest of honor at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, the city where Bonebakker jeweler has been offering pearl jewelry for more than 230 years.
The mystery of ‘Girl with a Pearl Earring’
‘Girl with a Pearl Earring’ was painted around 1665 and people all over the world have been fascinated by ‘The Girl’ ever since. The Girl with a Pearl Earring has even been credited with a role as a muse in the film adaptation of Tracy Chavelier’s book, ‘Girl with a Pearl Earring’. In this film, the girl is played by Scarlett Johansson. No matter how much the girl has been looked at and examined, she is still a mystery. She probably never really existed, but Vermeer, ‘The Master of Light’, made her come alive. The painting has been part of the collection of the Mauritshuis in The Hague since 1902.
The famous pearl which isn’t a pearl
The Mauritshuis recently examined the painting with new techniques and something special was discovered: the pearl that the girl wears is an illusion. The ‘pearl’ floats in space and is not worn with a hook like an earring. Vermeer created the ‘pearl’ with only two strokes of lead white. Luckily, pearl jewelry that ís real, can be seen today in your favorite jewellery store.
Romantic Victorian pearls
People have been wearing pearls for thousands of years. It was mainly kings and queens who could carry these beautiful treasures from the sea. In the documented, rich history of Bonebakker it is described that ‘Paarlen- en juweelenhandel As Bonebakker & Zoon’ as court jeweler supplied many pearls to the family of Orange. Bonebakker was a purveyor to the royal household of all 19th-century monarchs of Orange. At that time, natural pearls (called ‘peres’) were richly worn by ‘ladies of good standing’. They were seen as romantic, and stylish.
One of the royal showpieces that Bonebakker was allowed to produce in the 19th century was the royal crown, made in 1840. This crown, which was made for King William II during the Early Victorian period, has: “various coloured stones, ‘peres’, as well as eight rows of descending ‘peres’.”
Willem III (1817-90), King of The Netherlands, Nicolaas Pieneman, 1856 oil on canvas, Rijksmuseum
At Bonebakker we are still fascinated by the mysticism and shine of pearls. Not only that of ‘Girl with a pearl earring’, but by every pearl that nature gives us. In the Bonebakker collection, you can find various pearl earrings; from very classic to very modern. With their soft shine, they highlight the radiance of women of all ages.
Pearl earrings from the BoHo Collection by Ole Lynggaard, available at Bonebakker
Messika Beyond the Light collection goes big during Paris Fashion week
Colorful and grand: after two years of corona absence, Haute Joaillerie presentations during Paris Couture Week were dominated by dazzling brilliance. For their new collections, brands opted en masse for ‘Less is no more’ with gemstones and diamonds of considerable size. The new Messika Beyond the Light collection was literally presented in grand style.
Beyond the Light collection
Daughter of a diamond merchant Valérie Messika launched her eponymous high fashion jewellery brand in 2005. With her label, Parisian Valérie wanted to do more than just use diamonds in high-end jewellery and engagement rings. She wanted something cooler, something fresh: diamonds with a fashionable look to wear every day. The Messika Beyond the Light collection is a breathtaking sequel.
Diamonds of 110 carats
During Paris Fashion Week 2020, many stars were already spotted on the red carpet wearing ‘a Messika’. This year, the brand presented the new Messika collection ‘Beyond the Light’. The collection is inspired by ancient Egypt. The absolute eye-catcher was the Akh-Ba-Ka necklace. With no less than 15 diamonds, and a 33-carat diamond in the middle as the largest stone, the necklace is bigger than big. All these diamonds were cut from a 110-carat rough diamond, which was found in a mine in Botswana. Valérie’s father and brother, André and Ilan Messika, bought the enormous rough diamond in 2020. They named it ‘Tender Diamond’, but ‘Perfect Diamond’ would have also fit. The stone is graded D (colorless) and flawless (Fl).
The new Messika beyond the Light collection is telling a beautiful story about an exceptional stone. But also about an exceptional brand. Because in the meantime, Valérie is going ‘big’ herself. This year alone, 22 new Messika shops will be opened worldwide. How wonderful that we at Bonebakker jewelers are the official and exclusive Messika dealer for Amsterdam!
In addition to the Messika presentation, there was even more beauty to be experienced from brands that we represent at Bonebakker. Everyone from the world of Haute Joaillerie seemed to be keen on enchanting Paris with more exuberance, more creativity, and more gemstones than ever.
Stillness and exuberance in the Boucheron Ailleurs collection
Where the Messika Beyond the Light collection shines with gold and diamonds, Boucheron goes For the Boucheron collection ‘Ailleurs’, creative director Claire Choisne designed a dreamlike collection. In the designs, there seems to be no border between nature, man, and the animal world. Five spheres, ranging from tranquil to exuberant, characterise the collection, which is inspired by nature. The ‘Pebble Necklace’ is breathtaking and consists of white marble stones that include pear-shaped and brilliant-cut diamonds. The lightness of moonlight and mist that this necklace evokes is in stark contrast to the ‘Leaf Woman’ atmosphere. In this series, green tourmaline, tsavorite, citrine, and white diamonds among others, exuberantly express the colors of the jungle.
Buccellati goes vintage
Not only Valérie went back to the past with her Messika Beyond the Light collection. During Paris Fashion Week, Buccellati showed a number of hidden treasures from its own history. These included the bracelet ‘Deep Light Blue’, with Segrinato engraving and a 74.25-carat square-cut aquamarine, and the earrings ‘Rania’ with tourmalines and 150 brilliant-cut diamonds. The jewellery Buccellati selected for their Vintage collection was made between 1940 and 1990. Whether you are fond of vintage jewellery or not, it’s very exciting to get an eye on jewellery that until recently always remained hidden from the public. With the vintage collection, Buccellati wants to capture its own creative heritage. To do so, they collected more than 20,000 original drawings, 500 plaster casts and more than 6,000 photographs. A selected number of jewels from the Buccellati Vintage collection are now for sale.