“Jewels Inspired by Nature. Ilgiz F.” at Moscow Kremlin Museums

Russia has had a long tradition of jewelry enameling which reached its apex at the turn of the 20th century with works created by Carl Fabergé and his ateliers for the Russian Imperial Court, as well as the creations of other Russian jewelers like Georgy Samoshin and Pavel Ovchinnikov, who was well known for his filigree, painted, and stained-glass enamels. Today this tradition continues with the work of the Moscow-based jeweler Ilgiz Fazulzyanov operating under the brand Ilgiz F.

Next month, the Moscow Kremlin Museums will present a retrospective of about 150 of Fazulzyanov’s hand-crafted jewelry with enameled pieces using grand-feu enameling, in an exhibition title “Jewels Inspired by Nature. Ilgiz F.”

While the jeweler’s creations, with their profusion of flowers and dragonflies, have a strong affinity to the work of Art Nouveau artists such as Rene Lalique, the jeweler says he is also inspired by Art Deco and traditional Russian crafts.

Fazulzyanov first studied to be a painter and started working in jewelry almost by accident in the early 1990s. The self-taught jeweler likens the art of enameling to that of painting, adding that it allows him to create jewelry with a large color palette. “Enameling is my paint, gold my canvas,” he muses, adding he favors flowers less often used in jewelry making such as thistles and irises, and in addition to enameling he uses techniques such as filigree work, coining, and engraving.

The Kremlin exhibition will include some of the pieces that have won him awards such as the pendant Bullfinches (using red enamel, diamonds, and sapphires), along with his oversized Artichoke ring in subtle shades of olive green, purple, and pearl gray that complement a large facetted dark pearl, and his vivid Irises bracelet. Sketches and drawings will also be exhibited, giving a glimpse to the jeweler’s artistic process.

“My works retain the warmth of my hands,” he says, “My art has taught me to be very focused and pay attention to detail. The world around us is unbelievably rich and diverse as long as we take care to look closely. Is there anything more wonderful than nature itself?”

Concurrently to the jewelry exhibition, Fazulzyanov will also present artworks he has created over the last 20 years and two series of timepieces he decorated in grand feu enameling for BOVET 1822, one of pocket watches based on his interpretation of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (Pestilence, War, Famine, and Death), and the other of lady timepieces using a floral theme.

The exhibition will open March 31 at the Belfry Tower of the Moscow Kremlin Museums and runs until July 31.

First published on BLOUINARTINFO.COM