The managing director of Van Cleef & Arpels for Southeast Asia on the new Cadenas timepiece and her jewellery signature. By Cai Mei Khoo.
The Cadenas watch was first created in 1935. Why was it chosen to be reinterpreted this year? Well, it is an iconic design of the maison, as much as the Zip necklace is to our high jewellery. Avant-garde in the 1930s, it remains extremely contemporary. The reinterpretation is actually very faithful to the original design. At first glance it doesn’t look like a timepiece. It is a true jewel that tells the time. Tell us why the Cadenas, as, which means ‘lock’ in French, nch, informs the design. There is a tradition in Paris for couples to attach locks to the Pont des Arts. A lock secures and binds two elements,ts, and the Cadenas is a strong symbol of loveve bonds. For the third anniversary of the Duke e and Duchess of Windsor, she received a Cadenas enas watch in platinum with diamonds on a snakeke chain. Does the Cadenas reflect love, luck, and the poetry of time? It is a perfect symbol of love and cann hide a secret message engraved in its clasp. This bold, abstract style has always been part of the maison’s aesthetic, especially in the 1930s’ Ludo creations, the Etruscan bracelets worn by Jackie Onassis, and sautoirs from the 1970s. Your personal favourite from SIHH 2015? The Abstraction High Jewellery timepiece is just breathtaking! W
Your signature pieces? My Fleurette pendant, the first Van Cleef & Arpels piece I ever owned. Also a Between the Finger ring – so unique, light, and feminine – and an Alhambra bracelet, which I touch spontaneously as a lucky charm all day long. Pieces of jewellery that every woman should own? A Vintage Alhambra sautoir, a diamond solitaire, two Perlée bangles, and a clip to be worn in myriad ways. Being 13 ye years with Van Cleef & Arpels, what are your ca career highlights? A milestone was in 2006 when we celebrated the 100th anniversary of the maison. That was a tremendously creative year with three collections of high jewellery and fresh Alhambr Alhambra designs. It was a tribute to heritage, and a new step towards the future. What is the Van Cleef & Arpels difference? Its unique style, the positive vision of life its creations convey, a no-compromise approach in the quality of stones used, and the permanent quest for excellence in craftsmanship. A painting of the Haute Joaillerie Abstraction timepiece
A Cadenas watch from 1939 Necklace, Van Cleef & Arpels
Perlée bracelet in pink gold, Van Cleef & Arpels