They say that when you own five or more pieces by a particular designer, then you’re officially a “collector” of that line. If that is indeed the definition, then I certainly qualify as a collector of Alberian & Aulde, the unique line created by creative duo, Warren Alberian and Mary Aulde. While I’ve spent many years getting to know their jewelry in stores such as Gallery of Jewels and Fragments, I finally had the pleasure of meeting them in person. I had to feed my parking meter twice, as I was so enthralled hearing about their work and trying on all the pieces they brought for the trunk show. In this interview, they’re sharing their latest collection, Moments. Read on for a glimpse inside the designers’ minds.
What was the inspiration for the Moments collection?
We wanted to envision a modern aesthetic that was in the rhythm of today. The baguette and square shaped gemstones spoke to that with a myriad of parallel step facets and hard angles. Our intention was to integrate and control the flow of light leading from stone to stone enabling us to capture an urban, cosmopolitan, architectural spirit…the experience you may have with constructivist cubist artwork but through the interplay of light — a fresh take on the spirit of modernity. The idea is to excite the present moment. In fact to create moments with unexpected engaging flashes of light reminiscent of shafts of light piercing the corridors of buildings in a cityscape…
As you begin creating pieces for a collection, what’s the driving force? Are you driven by the shapes? The materials?
There are certain principles of light excitation on the eye that underpin any design…that is what drives all of our designs. It is the shapes and it is the materials, but it’s something more than that, the relationship of the parts to the whole which creates a special subtle effect.
We want to make pieces that make people feel something…by the shapes, the way the light from the gem reflects, flashes and then goes dark; by the spontaneity of movement.
So, our intent is to make shapes of light that move with you….ones that are different enough for everyone to self style with in their own way, shape-wise and that compliments your vibration/aura.
The Deja Vu earrings are just gorgeous. Please tell me a bit about how they developed.
As the Deja Vu piece was in process, we called it the Mondrian. It felt like art… Warren sculpts the original pieces from wax using sketches that Mary makes…as he was sculpting, rather than making it a flat piece, he worked the stones into angles to make it dimensional on the piece so that the light reflects from many directions. A friend who saw the earring calls it holographic, which we think fits the idea for us.
The “nugget”, a cube shaped dangle that hangs from the top, is an element we made to hang from several of the pieces. The sculpture also works as a stud earring. We have made the Deja Vu earring both with and without the nugget dangle, we like it best with but some do not like a dangle.
Is there any particular symbolism in the Castle earrings?
The beauty of a piece like the Castle earring is that everyone can put their own story on it! It is designed to be open to interpretation.
We started to see the resemblance of the Moments collection to one of the first collections we ever made — one that was all one-of-a-kind pieces using baguettes, squares, triangles and other fancy shaped gemstones…that collection included our first ever Hoopla piece (interlocking rings of gemstones) and some pieces very similar to the Castle earring and Tower earrings and pendants; little sculptures of shapes, color and light attached together to create evocative jewels. We went with it …and we copied ourselves but make everything producible!
Here’s a peek into the archives — the original versions of the Tower and Castle earrings.
I don’t know about you, but hearing such detailed insights into this jewelry makes me appreciate it all the more. I want to thank Mary and Warren for their time and talent. It was a delight meeting you both, and I can’t wait to see what you create next!