Rome, museum city or queen of Pop art ?

It is no coincidence that the city of Rome, a veritable open-air museum built on seven hills, is the historical cradle of Bulgari. Wherever one looks and virtually around every street corner lies a wealth of surprising sculptures, appealing architecture and impressive art. Andy Warhol famously said “When I am in Rome, I always visit Bulgari, because it is the most important museum of contemporary art.” It was also in Rome that the brand launched its Wild Pop high jewelry collection last summer, a vibrant tribute to the 1980s.

A day in Rome should begin with a stroll through the magnificent grounds of the Villa Borghese overlooking the many spires and steeples of the city, whose generous nature is endowed with a poetic touch through the historical monuments and sculptures that abound throughout. A perfect prelude to a visit to the legendary Bulgari boutique on the Via dei Condotti, leading to the famous Piazza di Spagna. Its distinctive architecture is partially due to the fact that it links two formerly separate historical buildings that it has brought within a single entity. It comprises numerous splendidly decorated areas with themed content, including a Curiosity Store – a unique artistic concept. Fans of the brand will remember that Nicola Bulgari was an art lover and a pioneer of Pop Art who even moved to New York during the 1980s. He particularly cherished Bulgari’s special bond with Andy Warhol. AVEC FEAST OF FLOWERS, la maison honore l’essence simple d’une fleur unique, grâce à un collier serti de 12 émeraudes de Zambie (45,15 ct) et des boucles d’oreilles serties de 2 émeraudes de Zambie en forme de poires (4,99 ct et 5,21 ct) mélangées à des rubis et des diamants. WITH FEAST OF FLOWERS, the Maison honors the simple essence of a unique flower through a necklace set with 12 Zambian emeralds (45.15 ct) and earrings set with two pear-shaped Zambian emeralds (4.99 ct and 5.21 ct), combined with rubies and diamonds.The extravagant Bulgari models fitted seamlessly into this eclectic milieu. This colorful spirit with its spectacular dimensions is vividly reflected in the new Wild Pop collection and its magnificent High Jewelry creations, notably the Queen of Pop necklace and the stunning Feast of Flowers earrings.


As Bulgari’s CEO Jean-Christophe Babin points out, no other brand can so legitimately lay claim to this heritage. “Right from the start, Bulgari’s genetic heritage in Rome and its monumental architecture have been in its High Jewelry DNA, expressed through powerful volumes and vivid colors, as well as the pioneering introduction of colored gems other than precious stones. Pop Art was thus immediately and authentically compatible with these genes. The 2018 theme is extremely geometrical, but it echoes this DNA and its ensembles, all driven by an obsession to ensure that wearing them is an intensely pleasurable experience.” For above and beyond the rarity and the style of Bulgari’s high jewelry, its designers are firmly attuned to 21st century aesthetics, as illustrated in the Curls, my Love models in titanium and white gold. “Bulgari has an ability to immerse itself a bygone era, since curlers have vanished, while bringing the concept firmly into the present day through the metal, its conical shape, as well as its ultra-light, modern and ergonomic feel. Its modernity lies not only in the design as such, but in the way in which this design is expressed through daily wear. Let’s break out of the safebox so as to ensure that these are not objects to be worn on glittering occasions twice a year, but instead pleasing and pleasant accessories.” In Rome, all roads lead to Bulgari.

Brice Lechevalier is editor-in-chief of GMT and Skippers, which he co-founded in 2000 and 2001 respectively. He has also been CEO of WorldTempus since it joined the GMT Publishing stable, of which he is director and joint shareholder. In 2012 he created the Geneva Watch Tour, and he has been an advisor to the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève since 2011. Also closely involved in sailing, he has published the magazine of the Société Nautique de Genève since 2003, and was one of the founders of the SUI Sailing Awards in 2009 and the Concours d’Elégance for motor boats at the Cannes Yachting Festival in 2015.

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