The Chrysler presents a comprehensive look at one of the most influential designers of the 20th century, René Lalique, who combined artistry and industrialization to bring luxury to the masses.
Trained as a jewelry designer in the Art Nouveau style, he freelanced for Cartier and Boucheron before opening his own shop in 1885. By 1890, jewelry from his Parisian studio was the favorite of celebrities and social elites. His experiments with glass in jewelry steadily grew into a pursuit of its own, and within a few years his beautifully crafted perfume bottles were quite the rage. By 1909, he was mass-producing them in a factory.
This exhibition focuses on Lalique's work with glass and covers decades of creativity. As tastes moved from Art Nouveau to Art Deco, he had the luxury of being hailed as a leader and innovator in both.
By the time of his 1945 death, Lalique had left an indelible mark on glass art—producing jewelry, medallions, bottles, tableware, smoking accessories, lamps, clocks, even automobile mascots, more commonly known as radiator caps or hood ornaments today.
This exhibition includes historic images from a storied period of French history. It includes one of his patent applications, and it provides even further insight into his methods by way of production molds and design drawings. René Lalique: Enchanted by Glass will be on view Sept. 14, 2017, through Jan. 21, 2018, and admission is free.
The exhibition debuted at the Corning Museum of Glass on May 17, 2014. It was curated by Kelley Elliott, the assistant curator for modern and contemporary glass at the upstate New York institution.
As the Chrysler will present this exhibition in a larger space than the original show, we'll feature additional selected Lalique works from both gracious private collectors and the Chrysler's permanent collection. A fully illustrated catalogue accompanies the show and is available in The Museum Shop.