The links between Monaco, the city state in the French Riviera, and Chaumet may not seem visible at first but its ties are almost inextricable. Monaco is one of the last few monarchies in the world and the French jeweller is one of the most well-known jewellery brands for producing crowns and tiaras. So it only made natural sense for the jeweller to organise its Chaumet In Majesty. Jewels of Sovereigns Since 1780 exhibition in the principality.
Held at the Grimaldi Forum, the extensive exhibition showcases 250 items that regale visitors with stories about and behind the tiara complemented by exquisite pieces of art and exceptional sovereign jewels. Under the patronage of His Serene Highness Prince Albert II, the exhibition has been curated by French-Luxembourguish media and cultural figure Stéphane Bern and French jewellery historian and author of Royal Jewels, Christophe Vachaudez—both specialists in the Royal Courts.
The exhibition not only highlights Chaumet's brilliant jewellery savoir-faire and designs, it also showcases how the maison's founder Marie-Étienne Nitot became the official jeweller to Emperor Napoleon I in 1802, and subsequently crafted ceremonial jewels and tiaras for Empress Joséphine. Another interesting point is that despite many of the pieces boasting such long heritage, their designs look extremely contemporary and will not look out of place in today's context. Such is the timelessness of the maison's creations that they have transcended the evolution of trends and time periods.