French Excellence continues from the Monnaie de Paris with Van Cleef & Arpels.
For the third year the old French mint, the Monnaie de Paris, has released a range of coins meant to celebrate excellence in French artistic design. The series launched in 2014 with a commemoration of 250 years of Baccarat, purveyors of fine crystal. The following year saw a nod to the Royal Sèvres Factory, a fine ceramic company celebrating 275 years since its founding in the reign of King Louis XV. For 2016 it is the turn of high-end jewellery maker, Van Cleef & Arpels, now 110 years old.
Each year sees an amalgamation of two arts. From an inset Baccarat crystal to a Sevres resin insert, it comes as no surprise to see some high-end adornment for the 2016 coins. There are six coins and a medallion this year, three in silver and four in gold. Silver weights are Monnaie de Paris regulars – 22g and 155g, and there’s a medallion coming in at a sizeable 385g (approx 12oz). Gold weights are also well known – a 5 oz, a 1oz, and a ¼oz, are relatively common enough, but there’s also a huge and VERY expensive (over €100,000!!) one-kilo coin yet to launch.
A pair of the coins, one in each metal, are struck in a quadrilobe format, basically a merging of four circles into a rounded cross shape. Surprisingly, the artwork designed for the regular round shaped coin fits well into this new shape without any real compromise. The shape is aesthetically pleasing and a nice variation from the norm. The five ounce pair have a different modification to the basic design. The butterfly element on the reverse face is filled with a piece of mother-of-pearl, a subtle change and one that doesn’t distract from the rest of the artwork.
The design itself is a complex and intricate one, full of fine detail and in an unusual style, best described by just looking at the numerous images below. In true Euro style, the back is also the subject of some great work. Whatever your views on the style here, they are pretty gaudy looking for me, there’s no denying that the Monnaie de Paris are showcasing their minting talent here, quite successfully. Ranging in price from €82.00 to €950.00 in silver, and €508.00 to €10,920.00 in gold (no price yet on the 1kg), all are available to order from the Monnaie de Paris website now.
€10 SILVER 22 GRAM QUADRILOBE
Monnaie de Paris collaborates with a French house and creates every year a unique series inspired by two traditions of fine French craftsmanship. In 2016, Monnaie de Paris celebrates the 110th anniversary of Van Cleef & Arpels. The series mixing metal and diamonds is highlighting craftmen’s high level of requirements in those two houses.
The 10€ Silver coin and 200€ Gold was minted with a quadrilobe shape, as a tribute paid to the High Jewellery House’s Alhambra series.
The medal celebrates the 110th anniversary of Van Cleff & Arpels and highlights the know-how of jewellery. On the face :the medal reflects the universe of Van Cleef & Arpels through patterns inspired by nature or the imagination such as birds, flowers or fairies.The butterfly in mother of pearlanother is an iconic motif appeared as early as the 1920s . On the reverse : we find an element of the face, the butterfly, that three hands gently set with diamonds, make reference to the “Golden hands”.
€50 SILVER FIVE-OUNCE WITH MOTHER OF PEARL INSERT
VAN CLEEF & ARPELS
Van Cleef & Arpels is a French jewelry, watch, and perfume company. It was founded in 1896 by Alfred Van Cleef and his uncle Salomon Arpels in Paris. Their pieces often feature flowers, animals, and fairies, and have been worn by style icons such as Farah Pahlavi, the Duchess of Windsor, Grace Kelly, Jordan Paterra, and Elizabeth Taylor.
Alfred Van Cleef and his father-in-law, Salomon Arpels, founded the company in 1896. In 1906, following Arpels’s death, Alfred and two of his brothers-in-law, Charles and Julien, acquired space for Van Cleef & Arpels at 22 Place Vendôme, across from the Hôtel Ritz, where Van Cleef & Arpels opened its first boutique shop. The third Arpels brother, Louis, soon joined the company.
Van Cleef & Arpels opened boutiques in holiday resorts such as Deauville, Vichy, Le Touquet, Nice, and Monte-Carlo. In 1925, a Van Cleef & Arpels bracelet with red and white roses fashioned from rubies and diamonds won the grand prize at the International Exposition of Modern Industrial and Decorative Arts.
Alfred and Esther’s daughter, Renée (born Rachel) Puissant, assumed the company’s artistic direction in 1926. Puissant worked closely with draftsman René Sim Lacaze for the next twenty years. Van Cleef & Arpels were the first French jewelers to open boutiques in Japan and China. Compagnie Financière Richemont S.A. acquired the firm in 1999.
€200 GOLD ONE-OUNCE QUADRILOBE
€500 GOLD QUARTER-OUNCE
|DENOMINATION||COMPOSITION||WEIGHT||DIAMETER||FINISH||MINTAGE||BOX / COA|
|€10 EURO||0.900 SILVER||22.2 g||40.0 mm||PROOF||5,000||YES / YES|
|€50 EURO||0.950 SILVER||163.8 g||50.0 mm||PROOF||500||YES / YES|
|MEDALLION||0.950 SILVER||385.0 g||81.0 mm||PROOF||110||YES / YES|
|€50 EURO||0.920 GOLD||8.45 g||22.0 mm||PROOF||1,000||YES / YES|
|€200 EURO||0.999 GOLD||31.104 g||40.0 mm||PROOF||500||YES / YES|
|€500 EURO||0.999 GOLD||155.5 g||50.0 mm||PROOF||99||YES / YES|
Leave A Comment