Photo by Andrea Wyner
Old Italy, Modern Jewlery
Don’t let the very Victorian materials that jeweler Anna Porcu uses throw you off: She’s future-thinking—so much so that she has found a way to make cameos, those pendants with carved silhouettes your grandmother may have worn, fresh again. The daughter of two antique dealers, Porcu unearths her cameos throughout Italy, especially in Naples, where the most coveted ones were produced in the late 1800s. Rather than choosing traditional white-shell reliefs of fancy society women, she buys pieces with cupids or scenes of war that have been etched into amber, coral, or even lava. Back at her studio in the tiny village of Pienza, near Siena, she sets them in silver casings, then affixes the pieces to Tuscan leather bracelets. The last surprising touch? The cameos are detachable from the cuff, because pieces this unique can’t be worn everyday.
By Ondine Cohane, AFAR Contributor
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