Rue Pigalle x Aga Khan Museum: the Art of Adornment


Jewelry lives on a continuum and knows no borders. Materials, crafts, symbolism, cross-pollinate and merge across cultures, traditions and continents. It is in that spirit that I collaborated with the magnificent Aga Khan museum on the occasion of the exhibit “Emperors & Jewels: treasures of the Indian courts from the Al-Sabah collection, Kuwait.”

Centered on male jewelry such are archery rings, gem-studded rings and cups, intricately carved dagger hilts and trays, the collection reveals to us the opulence of the life at the Court of the Mughals. Dr. Filiz Çakır Phillip, co-curator of the exhibit, supplemented the objets with a series of paintings giving us a glimpse of the importance of beauty in daily life and even on the battlefield.

Images courtesy of the Aga Khan museum

Images courtesy of the Aga Khan museum

It is in that context that I was privileged to present 4 contemporary jewelry artists and designers from Italy and France, who draw their inspiration from widely different cultural backgrounds but nonetheless express the same sense of beauty and luxury as at the time of the Moghuls.

The sensorial richness of Annabella Santese who mixes cashmere with pearls and semi precious stones.

Annabella Santese pearl chocker

Annabella Santese pearl chocker

The intricate craftsmanship of Federica Borello and her resplendent parures.


The flamboyant colors of Helene Prime and her Indian gems.


And the delicate simplicity of Christine Leenardt who sources her inspiration in Japanese tradition.

Christine Leenardt Tsukimi necklace and cuff

Christine Leenardt Tsukimi necklace and cuff