By Elaine Yu
IIn the heart of Kensington Church Street in London, among various antique and fashion boutiques, stands a jewellery shop. As soon as you enter the ‘home’ of Didier, you will be astonished by the wonderful and splendid designs. Are these art? Jewellery? Sculpture?
在西倫敦的肯辛頓教堂街（Kensington Church Street）上眾多的古董精品與摩登時裝店中間，悄然地陳列著一家首飾店。推門進入Didier 的“家”，馬上會被風格各異、充滿靈氣的陳列品所吸引，這些是藝術品？是首飾？是雕塑？
You can almost see a showcase of a brief history of art here from Picasso, Fontana, Dali, Calder, Leger, Giacometti, to Lichtenstein, Haring and Warhol a symphony of pre and post war modern and contemporary art is played in this visual space.
“Every piece of jewellery has their own unique and personal story,” says Didier, “Some are made for their dearest and beloved ones, some are designed for a good friend, neighbour, or a special client, some a prototype of their bigger art work, which then became a piece of jewellery.”
“這裡每一件首飾都有他們獨特的故事，” Didier 說，“有的是給他們至親至愛的人所設計，有的是為一個要好的朋友、鄰居或者客戶定做，有的本來是他們大型作品的微縮模型，後來被製作成了首飾.”
“My job is to find these neglected wearable pieces of artwork, study them, research them and publish them for those who love art. Sometimes they appear in jewellery auctions, sometimes the owner passed away and the art work comes to the market from the jewellery box.”
Most painters designed these jewellery pieces and had them made, or collaborated with friends, while most sculptors made these themselves as they already possessed the technique of molding and soldering. Some had inspirations and breakthroughs on their other art work while creating these small pieces.
Calder began making jewellery for his sister’s dolls at age 6 and, for the rest of his life, carried pliers and bits of wire in his pockets. As he once put it: “I think best in wire.” One of the most valuable artwork that Didier has is a unique and symbolic spiral brooch of Calder.
Picasso loved experiencing all forms of median. He started making terra-cotta in his holiday home and made small as well as large pieces. He has devoted some of these to his lovers and some to relatives and friends. One day, Picasso saw his dentist Dr. Chatagnier making a golden crown for teeth, he asked him, “Could you teach me how to make this?” He then started his collaboration with Dr. Chatagnier. From the golden pieces we can visualize the lines and forms of characters in Picasso’s other art works. In addition to his signature many of these pieces also have Picasso’s finger prints embedded.
Dali’s pieces are rather symbolic, as if they are waken from various surrealist dreams of the artist. While the color and texture of the gem stone and metals seem to be re-illustrating Dali’s work in a unique 4D form. The 18k gold earrings made of rubies, emeralds and diamonds told a historic incident: British Prime Minister Chamberlain tried to call Hitler to avoid the war. He was not successful and the 2nd World War started. The telephone was a symbol of the failed conversation between Chamberlain and Hitler. This beautiful bright colored lip shaped brooch was inspired by the smile of Marilyn Monroe. Dali was in love with her ruby lips and pearl-like teeth and created this timeless piece.
Apart from household named artists Didier also has a good collection of many other talented artists and craftsmen. A paper box sitting on a small round table got my attention. Didier opened the patterned box for me and told me the story – it was a limited edition for the LV flagship store in Paris. Inside the box there is an art deco style silicon pendant designed by Armen, a futuristic brooch made of golden tissues by Cesar and a black box that you could wear around your neck by Ben Vautier. Didier opened the box for the first time. A small pebble was wrapped carefully with a tiny scroll which reads in French “After Marcel Duchamp’s drawing of the sea, every pebble on the beach is a diamond.”
除去家喻戶曉的藝術家們， Didier 還收藏了許多天才藝術家的作品。在別致的仿古小圓桌上，一個小盒子吸引了我的眼球，Didier十分友好地為我打開了這個印有LV圖標的硬紙盒，並講述其中的故事–這是LV巴黎旗艦店開張時藝術家們為其作出的限量版設計，裡面有一個長方形矽膠Art Deco吊墜，一個長方形未來主義風格（ Futurism）的胸針。以及一個拴有黑繩子的，可以做項鏈的盒子。Didier 第一次打開這個盒子的時候，裡面有一張小紙條橫幅，小心地包裹著一個石子。上面寫著法語‘自從杜尚畫過海以後，沙灘上的每一顆鵝卵石都是一粒鉆石。’
Most of the pieces in the collection are from deceased artists. The only living artist in Didier’s shop is Iranian Adnan Charara. The name of this ring is ‘ I love you from the bottom of my heart.’