Details Behind the Rose

Beyond the flower lies its thorns. An age-old symbolism returns with mischievous and passionate charm through bold and extremely modern connotations of style

«But he who dares not grasp the thorn, should never crave the rose» as a line from The Narrow Way, a poem by Victorian writer Anne Brontë, goes. A phrase that seems to echo in the stylistic choices of contemporary artists and designers, bringing to the surface the romantic dichotomy that belongs to the rose, a symbol long rooted in literary and poetic imagination. Last June, artist and rapper Kendrick Lamar appeared on stage at Glastonbury in a “Crown of Thorns,” the same one he is seen wearing on the cover of his latest album “Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers,” where he poses with his entire family. Made of titanium and molded into 50 different shaped thorns decorated with more than 8,000 diamonds, it is the work of craftsmen at Tiffany & Co. in collaboration with Lamar and his creative partner Dave Free. A one-of-a-kind artefact meant to be an emblem of “artistic appreciation, humility and perseverance,” it sanctions an unprecedented cross-contamination between the more sophisticated side of hip-pop culture and the supreme heights of fine jewelry. «Kendrick Lamar represents the artistry, risk-taking creativity and relentless innovation that has also defined Tiffany & Co. for nearly two centuries,» said Alexandre Arnault, the company’s Executive Vice President of Products and Communication. «We are proud and incredibly excited to work with a visionary like Kendrick in realizing his vision for the crown.» In the nearby world of conceptual ready-to-wear, up-andcoming brand Jordanluca has adopted the rose as an icon of indolent sensuality, unveiling its poetry in the form of long metal stalks encircling the neck of “danger and desire” on the latest men's Spring/Summer 2023 catwalk. «Millions of us enact and re-enact what Freud called the “death drive” every day by being irresistibly attracted to 101 forms of self-destruction and dangerous pleasure,» said creative directors Jordan Bowen and Luca Marchetto in the press release. On gliding through the world of avant-garde jewelry, one can’t help but land on the fascinating yet revolutionary universe of Shaun Leane, always greatly inspired by the sentiment and romance in literature and poetry as well as the strength and fragility of natural organic forms. These concepts find their utmost expression in the Rose Thorn collection, which impeccably encapsulates contrasting notions of delicacy and brutal temptation; protection and danger. For Leane, the rose is nature's most seductive flower, an austere representation of strength and fragility, and he translates its unmistakable wonder into bold jewelry with sculptured thorns. How can one not fall into such a delicate and equally thorny temptation of style?

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