Gender borders in fashion and luxury have been dissolving in recent years and at the same time men’s jewelry has emerged to become commonplace in fashionable and high jewels.
In recognition of this, Sotheby’s will stage a selling exhibition dedicated to the evolution of men’s jewelry from the mid-19th century to the present day.
Comprising approximately 100 pieces, “For the Boys: A Jewelry Exhibition,” will showcase antique and vintage designs from historic jewelry brands, such as Van Cleef & Arpels, Cartier, Tiffany & Co, Verdura and David Webb. The vintage pieces will be complemented by modern and contemporary jewels will be from Chrome Hearts, NN by Nghi, David Yurman and Shaun Leane. Sotheby’s says the exhibition “will commemorate the various styles, trends, and muses of men’s jewelry throughout the decades.”
The exhibition is open to the public at Sotheby’s New York galleries September 23 –October 5. All pieces in the exhibition are available for private sale, with prices ranging from $3,000 to $300,000.
The exhibition is curated by Frank Everett, Sotheby’s vice chairman of Jewelry, who is considered by many to be a trusted authority in the field of jewelry. He has overseen landmark auctions at Sotheby’s that include “The Collection of Mrs. Paul ‘Bunny’ Mellon” and “The Personal Collection of Shaun Leane.” Everett partnered with Carol Woolton, jewelry editor at British Vogue, in 2019 to create the selling exhibition of floral jewels “In Bloom” and most recently co-curated the groundbreaking selling exhibition Brilliant & Black, which was the first showcase dedicated to black jewelry designers.
Everett’s popularity extends from the highbrow world of high jewelry auctions to mass audiences through his popular Instagram account, which has more than 152,000 followers, and his popular video series, “Frank’s Files.”
Two contemporary jewelers stand out in this exhibition.
The first is London-based jewelry designer Shaun Leane, who is known for producing jewels using traditional fine jewelry craftsmanship that are audacious enough for the fashion runways, famously partnering with Hubert de Givenchy and the late Alexander McQueen. Some of his works are in the permanent collections of New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art and London’s Victoria and Albert Museum. “For the Boys” will offer 15 creations from Leane, including Serpent’s Trace, Hook, Sabre and Talon.
The second is David Yurman, which first launched men’s jewelry 20 years ago where it continues as a growing part of the eponymous brand’s core business. Sotheby’s says that Evan Yurman, president and chief creative officer of David Yurman, “has been the driving force behind the success and innovation of the men’s category, constantly pushing the boundaries of 18k white gold, with a glistening gem-encrusted surface, replicates both the skin and endoskeleton of the serpent.”
Everett credits David Yurman for inspiring and encouraging him to wear men’s jewelry during his time working with the brand from 2009 to 2012. “For the Boys” will offer 22 designs from David Yurman men’s collections that include Meterorite, Spiritual Beads, Starburst, Petrvs and Chevron.