The latest collection from Emily Satloff, the founder and designer of New York City’s Larkspur & Hawk, combines her two passions: art and jewelry. Called Cora, the new series comprises pieces framed in colorful gemstones and gold, featuring abstract paintings that reference works by 20th-century artists, namely Paul Klee and Gustav Klimt. Like the Georgian-era colored-foil technique Satloff uses for her brand’s other designs, the painterly approach to Cora provides a playful, modern-day interpretation of artwork from the past.
“I have always loved painted miniatures from the 18th century and the tradition of setting miniature paintings into jewelry,” says Satloff, who enlisted an artist friend to translate her ideas onto the colorful canvases. “He painted a small vellum panel using a combination of enamel paints and gold and palladium leaf. After the panel was complete, I mapped out the sections that I wanted to set into the jewelry.” Each portion was then cut and placed beneath transparent white-quartz cabochons.
The finished designs include earrings, rings, and pendants bearing painted swirls of crimson and orange, gold leaf, and colored stones. “I love that each piece is hand-painted and one of a kind,” says Satloff, whose penchant for serious art is well established. She was a curator at the New York Historical Society and a consultant for the Metropolitan Museum of Art before she established Larkspur & Hawk in 2008. Around the time of her company’s founding, she began building a personal collection of distinctive vintage jewelry, often hunting down pieces by flashlight at predawn antiques markets. She says she’s already working on new hand-painted expressions for her jewelry, no doubt with the same determination.