An art form with emotional power, caught between surprise and wonder, the gaze is captured, absorbed and lost in the fascinating depths of thousand-year-old stones, awakening the most vivid of emotions. This is the new Sixieme Sens par Cartier collection.
With a stylised feline interpretation, organic textures and shards of coloured light, shimmering gems electrify while stones in flavoursome hues of ripe fruits summon up scents of distant paradises. Using trompe-l’œil and graphic patterns, optical illusions and the power of evocation, compositions play with earthly gravity in radiant transfigurations of reality.
Quivering in the light, jewels come to life upon contact with the skin. By challenging our perceptions, this collection leads us into a world of sensory stimulation, as each sense comes alive, including the sixth sense: a staggering feeling of emotion that touches the heart.
How do you enhance the beauty of an 8.20 carat ruby? Behind the architecture of this ring is a tiered construction that allows a 4.01 carat rose-cut diamond to be inserted directly below the magnificent stone that sits at the top. When the light hits the diamond after first passing through the ruby, its rich red hue is intensified. The structure integrates groups of triangular diamonds while maintaining the ring’s airy appearance. Along with tiny ruby balls, diamonds surround the central stone, arranged with subtle openings to allow them to catch the light, illuminating the ruby.
The purity of the motif is also its strength. The stones appear to multiply ad infinitum, an optical illusion that is made all the more striking by the relief of the piece as each element is mounted at a different level. Movement, rhythm, and all spatial and temporal references are lost in a precious mosaic of gemstones.
The blurring of perspective is complemented by a play of materials and light between mirror-polished metal and graphic black onyx. As always with Cartier, particular attention has been paid to the back of the piece, which reveals the exact reverse of the front.
A stylised play on the feline’s coat has been part of Cartier’s artistic bestiary since 1914. Faithful to the original stylisation, here, motifs make up the panther’s spots. Polished onyxes evoke the marbling of the fur, while white, yellow and orange diamonds represent the thickness of the pelt, with its golden reflections highlighted by three captivating golden topazes for a total of 27.34 carats. Attention to the volume and articulation of the sides allows the construction to respect the vertical geometry of the collar, while preserving its flexibility.
In contact with the skin, the jewel comes alive with all the agility of a feline.
At its centre lies a 21.51-carat sapphire cabochon, with an intense blue hue which seems to glow from within. Around it, five parentheses of radiant diamonds and emeralds reflect the light, fanning out like the surface of a lake. Black lacquer creates shadow effects to reinforce the impression of movement, supported by the original width of the ring, which spans three fingers, with slightly mobile tips. As an ultimate refinement, the motif can be detached and worn as a brooch. Created at the beginning of the 20th century, this combination of sapphires and emeralds, named the “peacock motif” by Louis Cartier, is part of the maison’s emblematic colour palette.
The captivating texture and chromatic intensity of this necklace belie the rigorous and precise approach of its inception. After selecting the emeralds according to their colour and diameter, artisan jewellers carefully considered harmony, symmetry and correct placement in the composition, before assembling using the threading technique — an expertise rooted in the maison’s savoir-faire which consists of threading the stones on a wire to form strands and fringes. Finally, the strands are linked together by tiny metal bridges, maintaining a fan shape while allowing the fringes to remain mobile.
With a balance of straight lines and curves, the design of this piece highlights its ample and generous volume. Considered as a whole, the necklace evokes an organic shape, ripe with succulent berries. Enhancing such a colour palette requires gemological mastery, while the discreet tourmaline settings and attention to detail, right down to the shape of the garnets cut to reflect curves of the piece, reveal the workshop’s expertise.
A vibrant testament to the enchanting power of diamonds, this necklace features six different cuts — kite, octagonal, emerald, triangle, baguette and brilliant — certified D IF and E IF, each of which reflects light from a unique angle. Characterised by rigorous geometry, the necklace is entirely structured by an interplay of lines, with three stones — a kite of 3.00 carats, an octagon of 1.62 carats, and an emerald of 1.54 carats — emerging from brilliant interlacing to catch the eye. The chain resembles a tight braid of gemstones, creating a path of light leading to the trio of diamonds. On the outside, brilliant-cut diamonds appear to slip underneath the inclination of the baguette-cut diamonds, radiating from the top thanks to the graphical effect of motif repetition.
* This article was paid for by Cartier.