Hortus Deliciarum. Latin for garden of Delights is the subtle and appropriate name of Gucci’s second high jewelry collection designed by Alessandro Michele. The stunning collection of over 130 pieces, which are by and large unique, is a memory of light. The changing light of the day, a collection which draws its inspiration from the ephemeral beauty of the sky during different times of the day. It is a kaleidoscopic vision from Alessandro Michele, a collection that revolves around four themes influenced by the majestic beauty of nature.
Natural landscapes are honored in the first theme with cascading diamonds reminiscent of waterfalls or the wind blowing lightly through the forest in nature. The designer has brought to contemporary life cascading earrings and necklaces with their fringes and pompoms. Alessandro Michele has also revived chandelier earrings. The diamonds are dotted with violet and deep purple spinels while Paraíba tourmalines bring to mind the azure blue of the ocean.
The magic of dusk is showcased in the second theme which brings to life the colors of the setting sun. Romantic even Gothic settings abound here.Opals and topazes join forces with spessartine garnets and tourmalines in a panorama of rich and warm colors while an 8-carat opal is set with precious dusk-colored gemstones.
The third theme of the Hortus Deliciarum Collection pays tribute to the rose garden and features carefully selected gemstones chosen for the clarity and subtlety of their color like the padparadscha orange-pink sapphire evoking a rose petal on the verge of opening. Intense indigo tourmalines bring to mind the dark of night.
The fourth theme brings into view the animal realm with a mythical bestiary of ancient fauna like the lion, the tiger and the magical mysticism of Dionysus, all highlights of the apogee of the jewelry universe of Gucci. Blue tanzanites dominate inside the mouths of roaring lions while a 16.36 carat opal is surrounded by a pride of 22 lion heads.
The house also pays tribute to high watchmaking with pivoting lion heads – a symbol dear to Alessandro Michele — which reveal or dissimulate the watch dial in sea blue opal from Australia outfitted with spectacular bracelets loaded with diamonds, set with violet tanzanites and peridots.
©Trish Valicenti for The Gourmet Gazette