Cindy Chao, Siegelson Among New Jewelry Exhibitors At TEFAF Maastricht

The TEFAF Maastricht art fair implemented a more transparent selection procedure and show officials say this has led to 40 new exhibitors taking part in what is arguably the world’s most prestigious art fair. Among the new invitees are high jewelry artist, Cindy Chao, and respected jewelry and art dealers, Siegelson, FD Gallery and Symbolic & Chase.

The 120-carat “Nizam Diamond,” a tear-shaped diamond from the famed Golconda mines in India being offered by SiegelsonSIEGELSON

There will be a total of 279 exhibitors participating in the 32nd edition of the fair being held March 16 – 24 in Maastricht, Netherlands, with two private viewing days on March 14 and 15. The total number of exhibitors is only four more than the prior year so many of the new exhibitors are replacing those that left the fair. The exhibitors are spread across the eight sections: TEFAF Ancient Art, TEFAF Antiques, TEFAF Design, TEFAF La Haute Joaillerie, TEFAF Modern, TEFAF Paintings, TEFAF Paper and TEFAF Tribal, and TEFAF Modern, where 14 of the 40 new exhibitors will be stationed.

“Nizam Diamond,” being offered by Siegelson with its Moghul-inspired emerald and ruby necklaceSIEGELSON

Siegelson, headed by Lee Siegelson, is making its first appearance at TEFAF count. The firm already announced that it will unveil rare aluminum earrings made by renowned artist, Daniel Brush. In addition, it will present the “Nizam Diamond,” a 120-carat tear-shaped diamond unearthed at that famed Golconda mines in India. This historic stone is named after the last monarch of Hyderbad, who owned the jewel. It is being presented in a Moghul-inspired emerald and ruby necklace.

The Greenovia Brooch by Cindy Chao The Art JewelCINDY CHAO THE ART JEWEL


Chao, who works under the brand name, Cindy Chao The Art Jewel, is known for her one-of-a-kind museum quality pieces that she offers under the name, “Black Label Masterpieces.” She produces no more than 36 of these sculptural, gem encrusted jewels per year. The Taiwanese jeweler will be showing many of these high jewelry pieces at TEFAF, including her 2018 Black Label Masterpiece XVII “Greenovia Brooch” that features a 105.37-carat chrysoberyl cat’s eye. The nature-inspired work is composed of nearly 2,500 pieces, including six varieties of green gemstones that create 16 silk-like chromatic grades on the petals and leaves set in finely crafted titanium. The diamond covered yellow stem is made of oxidized silver.

Other new firms exhibiting at TEFAF include the New York-based, FD Gallery, antique and vintage jewelry specialists, and Symbolic & Chase, a London firm that specializes in fine jewelry from the 19th Century to the present.

19th Century “Snake” pendant necklace being offered by FD GalleryFD GALLERY

Among the pieces being offered by FD Gallery is a 19th Century “Snake” pendant necklace composed of Colombian emeralds, diamonds and rubies set in gold. It is accompanied by a handwritten note stating, “emerald, as a scarf pin presented by Victor Emanual, to The Rt Honorable Spencer H. Walpole on his visit to Cambridge.”

1930 “Modernist Brooch,” centered with a large sky-blue, faceted aquamarine with diamonds being offered by Symbolic & ChaseSYMBOLIC & CHASE

Symbolic & Chase, meanwhile, will be presenting a number of gem-set antique and period jewels including a 1930 “Modernist Brooch,” centered with a large sky-blue, faceted aquamarine with diamonds.

“The Wheel of Time” by Wallace ChanWALLACE CHAN

Among the contemporary jewelers who will return is Wallace Chan, now in his fourth year at TEFAF, who is unveiling a number of new jewels at the show, including two elaborate pieces. The first is the “The Wheel of Time,” a composition of 12 necklaces, with each individual necklace serving as a representation of the Chinese Zodiac as an examination of time and one’s personal relationship with the greater universe. Made of titanium with South Sea Pearls, yellow diamonds and sapphires, it is meant to be worn as one necklace.

“Butterfly Nebula” by Wallace ChanWALLACE CHAN

One of his other new creations is the “Butterfly Nebula,” a pair of surreal butterflies with titanium bodies that communicate through glittering patterns of yellow diamonds, diamonds, tsavorite garnets, pink sapphires, amethyst and rubies on their wings.

Aluminum and white gold ring centered with a large, faceted tsavorite by HemmerleHEMMERLE

Among the high jewelry artists who are mainstays at the fair, are two German firms. The first Hemmerle, whose one-of-a-kind and limited edition jewels made with innovative techniques and materials, such as aluminum, wood and ancient artifacts, have become highly collectible, both new and in the international auction market. Among the pieces the jeweler is exhibiting is an aluminum and white gold ring centered with a large, faceted tsavorite.

The “Eyrie” ring by Otto JakobOTTO JAKOB

The other German jeweler is Otto Jakob, which produces miniature jeweled art works using a variety of materials and techniques that are rarely used in jewelry making. One of the new pieces this year is the “Eyrie” ring, centered with an old mine-cut yellow diamond, circa 1900, that sits in a nest-like setting of intertwined diamond-set branches made of white and yellow gold.

The TEFAF vetting process was always considered by many to be the most rigorous and demanding in the world of art fairs. However, in March, fair organizers announced that it was introducing a new global vetting policy. Organizers removed vetters with commercial interests in the art market, such as art dealers and auction house experts. The fair now relies exclusively on academics, curators, conservators, conservation scientists and independent scholars to vet the artworks.