L.A.’s Natural History Museum to Host Exhibition of Jeweler Paula Crevoshay’s Work

The Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County (NHM) announced this week that it’s mounting an exhibit spotlighting the work of Louisiana-born jewelry designer Paula Crevoshay, whose colorful gemstone jewels have found their way into permanent museum collections over the years.

“Art of the Jewel: The Crevoshay Collection” will run from Dec. 7 to May 12, 2019, and will explore the art and science behind Crevoshay’s designs, “from mineral to gem to jewel,” according to a press release from the museum.

Paula Crevoshay spider
Itsy Bitsy (2012) by Paula Crevoshay, featuring an 8.92 ct. lemon opal, rubies, opals, black spinels, and black diamonds

Around 50 pieces—earrings, bracelets, and brooches—curated by the designer from her extensive oeuvre will be on display, alongside loose gems and minerals from the museum’s collections. The show will be on view in the Gem Vault of NHM’s Gem and Mineral Hall.

Flowers and animals are Crevoshay’s passion when it comes to jewelry, and the bejeweled “masterworks” she selected for this exhibit, all defined by their artful use of bold color (achieved through superb gemstone setting), are a glittering ode to Mother Nature.

Must-see pieces include Conchita (2007), a butterfly brooch set with two of the largest Montana sapphires in existence, both on loan from a mining operation in Montana; and Montana Bitterroot (2015), a flower brooch that uses nearly 300 pink Montana sapphires that took Crevoshay several years to accumulate, due to their rare color.

Paula Crevoshay tiger
Baianai (2018) by Paula Crevoshay, featuring cognac and white diamonds, aquamarines, and opals in gold 

Known as the “Queen of Color” in some jewelry circles, the designer trained as a painter and printmaker before transitioning to jewelry design after receiving an education in metals and gems in Sri Lanka, India, Tibet, and other areas of Southeast Asia.

Her work lives in the permanent collections of the Smithsonian, the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, and the museum of the Gemological Institute of America.

Top: Crevoshay’s Poppy (2012) with opal, moonstone, black diamonds, and diamonds in gold. 

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JCK Magazine Editor