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Sunday, 6 February 2011

LALAOUNIS: a square link necklace


This is another great example of Lalaounis mastering gold techniques. The square links of this necklace feature an interesting texture due to piercing and hammering work. The design, as in all Lalaounis pieces, is inspired in ancient greek jewellery. The piece comes up for auction at Bonhams London this week.

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Ilias Lalaounis
Born in 1920 in a greek family of goldsmiths. He studied law and economics but decided to join the family business, Zolotas in 1940. He took over the running of the company during the first world war while taking drawing lessons. In 1957 at the Thessaloniki International Trade Fair, he exhibited his gold pieces inspired by ancient greek ones for the first time. All throughout his life, archaeological greek revival would be his preferred style and manually hammered gold his preferred technique. In 1969, Lalaounis decided to set up his own business separate from his family. Lalaounis has received many prizes for his art with the outmost important being that of the French Academy of Fine Arts in 1990, as the only jeweller ever to be elected as its member. Today the company and his museum are run by his four daughters.