by Fenna Brinkmann
When we are talking about fine craftsmanship and exceptional savoir-faire, we are talking about Cartier. The French jewelry Maison, which has been founded in 1847 by Louis-François Cartier and opened its first boutique in 1978 in Amsterdam, will open a brand-new store early December in the P.C. Hooftstraat.
The new presence of Cartier in the Netherlands is a reason to be celebrated, with a space that is open on every side and where natural light flows and travels through volumes, animated by local elements but faithful to the Parisian heritage and the Cartier aesthetic. Welcome to the new world of Cartier, where talent and creativity meet iconic craftmanship.
But first we are at Atelier Midavaine in the center of Paris, where Anne Midavaine and her team are developing a piece of art in lacquered wood for the new boutique in Amsterdam. For more than ten years, Cartier has entrusted her with the realization of works specially commissioned for the boutiques. “We’ve got fifty pieces of art for Cartier that hang in shops in Shanghai, Monaco, New York and Dubai among others,’ Anne tells us. The motifs are obtained from archival drawings or contemporary creations, all by jewelry designers from Cartier. These works, enhanced by rare skills and expertise, contribute to the visual identity of the boutiques. This way the jewelry Maison ensures that the ancestral crafts are preserved and that a new boutique always finds its roots in the Maison’s heritage.
For the boutique in Amsterdam, a huge piece of art of approximately 26 square meters will be created. A tribute to the Dutch capital, showing the importance of natural light, cultural heritage but also French elegance and craftmanship. The result? A piece with round shapes, made of lacquer, gold and mother of pearl, which starts at the bottom of the stairs and takes you to dreamy, cloudy polder landscapes on the first floor. The colors have been carefully chosen, based on Dutch history (the Golden Age!) and the presence of nature, sea and wind. The ultimate eye-catchers of the artwork? Two emblematic panthers, the icon of Cartier. One stands at the first steps and the other one greets the visitor on the first floor. They were designed with the help of the in-house designers from High Jewelry. The powerful limbs, realistic attitude, lively expression, and spotted coat of the animals were worked with brass leaf and black inlays. The Amsterdam boutique will be the place where luxury and craftmanship come together, Cartier meets the Netherlands!