Art Deco is a visual arts style and movement of great influence (and acquired taste) that flourished in the 1920s through 1940s. It can also be recognized as “style moderne,” which translates from French as “modern style.” Better said by Britannica, “Art Deco design represent[s] modernism turned into fashion… the intention was to create a sleek and anti-traditional elegance that symbolized wealth and sophistication.” This type of design might cater to open-minded freethinkers of the eccentric kind, the opinionated fashion trend-setters, the fancy, and perhaps also to ambitious first-timers that wish to pair their otherwise modest personality with well-voiced embellishments. Fashion can be admired from afar, observed in interest or disinterest for its lack of missed opportunities, every aspect in form of mediums explored. Art Deco takes its place in the 21st century as a branch off of the avant-garde, places it on display, and allows us to live it in decorative art, fashion, and jewelry design.
It comes as no surprise that Art Deco-styled rings inspire conversations of a different kind. Sometimes less can be more, but other times, more is more. They can talk up a minimal dress, or can complement an already bold and ornate outfit. You can see this style in cocktail rings, some meant to be worn for special occasions or with semi-formal attire, and in engagement rings for those that want to be extravagant for every occasion. It is a style that is easily distinguished because artists are allowed the creative freedom to play with geometric or organic shapes with an experimental mindset. Britannica notes the features characteristic to the style as “reflected admiration for the modernity of the machine and for the inherent design qualities of machine-made objects (e.g., relative simplicity, planarity, symmetry, and unvaried repetition of elements).” This can be seen in YEWN’s Jadeite Diamond “Wish Fulfilling Lattice Ring,” (render pictured below) as first seen at the World Stage adorned by First Lady Michelle Obama.
Designer Dickson Yewn took inspiration from Chinese architecture, specifically lattice windows of ancient Chinese gardens (photographed by Wenrong Cao), incorporated their designs on interior and exterior portions of the ring, and finely dressed them with the ever-so-loved vintage feel and texture of milgrain. The ring’s curious box-like shape and lavish qualities make it a surprisingly wearable statement art piece. It assuredly adds elegance to the First Lady’s choice of dress.
So why Art Deco? There are so many possibilities with art, so much we have yet to see that we would like to see. So our question is: why not?