Press | Seaman Schepps
Press | Seaman Schepps
Exhibitions | Collections on Display
Museum of Art & Design
”He used unorthodox settings, including other materials like coral and fine woods, as if composing a modernist collage.The New York Times
September 9, 2004 – January 2, 2005
In 2004, Museum of Art & Design curator David McFadden worked with Jay Bauer and Anthony Hopenhajm to mount a retrospective exhibition in celebration of the centennial of Seaman Schepps. Drawing on the company’s archives as well as private collections, the show drew a record number of visitors to the museum. Schepps vibrant and bold jewels were perfectly offset by the austere, minimalist installation designed by Massimo and Lella Vignelli. On display were historic jewels owned by heiresses and society ladies such as Doris Duke and Marguerite Wenner-Gren, the opera diva and wife of the Swedish steel magnate and industrialist Axel Wenner-Gren who later started the Electrolux Corporation and became one of the wealthiest men in the world in the 1930s. Original renderings, wax models, and vintage magazine covers featuring Schepps jewelry were also showcased.
A monograph of Schepps’ work–the exhibition’s coffee table-scale catalog–was published for this exhibition and features a biographical essay about Schepps by his granddaughter, the biographer Amanda Vaill. The book continues to inspire designers and style mavens around the world. Fashion plate and style author Amanda Brooks named it as one of her favorite coffee table tomes in her book entitled I Heart Your Style.
Somerset House, London
June 9th – August 27, 2007
In the summer of 2007, The Seaman Schepps retrospective made the journey across the Atlantic Ocean and opened in Somerset House’s Gilbert Collection, cementing Schepps as a distinguished jeweler whose legacy is recognized and appreciated around the world.
Massimo and Lella Vignelli, who designed the original installation for the open floor plan of the Museum of Art & Design in New York, painstakingly adapted their work to accommodate the historic interiors of Somerset House’s exhibition rooms.
The exhibition showed the earliest known surviving pieces of jewelry by Schepps, a pair of bracelets in the Art Deco style composed of engraved emeralds and engraved ruby leaves with diamonds in white gold. They still have their original hand-written receipt dated June 5 1931 when the price was $2,250!