125 Years of Italian Magnificence In Paris

Contemporary Italian jeweller Bulgari embarks on another grandiose celebration of its 125th anniversary in Paris with the launch of its 125 Years of Italian Magnificence exhibition.

Held at the renowned Grand Palais — one of the most coveted venues for fashion shows by top notch fashion designers and maisons during the bi-annual Paris Fashion Week — the exhibition is organised under the patronage of the Office of the President of the Italian Republic and the Italian Prime Minister's Office, in conjunction with Bulgari’s 125th anniversary celebration last year.

Housed in the museum’s nave, the exhibition retraces the main chapters in Bulgari's history and the evolution of the esthetic that made the brand a driving force of the "Italian school," from the opening of the first shop on Via Sistina in 1884 through the modern day.

This fascinating saga will be illustrated by more than 600 masterpieces of jewellery, watch- and clock making, and the decorative arts, including some one hundred exclusive pieces that will be on public display for the first time.

Certain pieces come from the collection of the Bulgari Museum, an exceptional trove of historic treasures conserved in the company's archives, while others are from private collections. Visitors are able to admire three pieces owned by the Grimaldi family, including a necklace that belonged to Princess Grace.

There are eight sections altogether, arranged in chronological order and visitors can learn the steep history of this Italian jewellery house, which was started by Sotirio Bulgari, a Greek silversmith who migrated to Italy in the 19th century to seek his fortune.

Aside from the profound story of its founding, Bulgari has also dedicated a separate room for a private collection that belongs to Hollywood silver screen goddess Elizabeth Taylor – a never seen before collection in France. As you may know, Elizabeth Taylor's tumultuous relationship with her ex-husband — who was also her co-star in the 1963 film Cleopatra — Richard Burton was punctuated by a series of gifts from this celebrated Italian jeweller.

Thus, to kick-start the celebration, a bevy of global jetsetters, socialites, celebrities and Bulgari ardent fans gathered at the Grand Palais recently to witness the exhibition inauguration. Besides being attended by the who’s who of Bulgari, celebrities such as Lenny Kravitz, Juliette Binoche and the current face of Bulgari, Julianne Moore were seen joining the sea of the glamorous lot in their stunning autumn/winter apparels and splendid Bulgari accessories.

The 125 Years of Italian Magnificence is open to the public now till January 12, 2011, from 10.00 am to 8.00 pm (10.00 pm on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays). Tickets, available from FNAC outlets or fnac.com, are priced at €12 (reduced price €10) and free for children under 10 years of age.

*Photos courtesy of Bulgari/image.net

Bvlgari - 2.23.00 & 3.25.00, Level 2 & 3, Pavilion KL, 168, Jalan Bukit Bintang, 55100; Ground Floor, Suria KLCC, Jalan Ampang, 55800 Kuala Lumpur.


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