Marne, 6 April 1860; d Paris, 1945).
French jeweller, glassmaker and designer. He began his studies at
the Lycée Turgot near Vincennes and after his father’s death
(1876) he was apprenticed to the Parisian jeweller Louis Aucoq,
where he learnt to mount precious stones. Unable to further his
training in France, he went to London to study at Sydenham
College, which specialized in the graphic arts. On his return to
Paris in 1880, he found employment as a jewellery designer
creating models for such firms as Cartier and Boucheron. His
compositions began to acquire a reputation and in 1885 he took
over the workshop of Jules d’Estape in the Rue du 4 Septembre,
Paris. He rejected the current trend for diamonds in grand
settings and instead used such gemstones as bloodstones,
tourmalines, cornelians and chrysoberyls together with plique à
jour enamelling and inexpensive metals for his creations. His
jewellery, which was in the Art Nouveau style, included
hair-combs, collars, brooches, necklaces and buckles (e.g.
water-nymph buckle, c. 1899–1901; Lisbon, Mus. Gulbenkian),
and he also branched out into metalwork, producing gold boxes,
inkwells and daggers. His favourite motifs included flowers and
insects—poppies and anemones, and dragonflies and scarabs. His
international reputation was established at the Exposition
Universelle in 1887 in Paris and by securing such patrons as the
actress Sarah Bernhardt (1844–1933).