THE ART OF CREATIVITY
Swiss designer Suzanne Syz revels in breaking certain codes of the Haute Joaillerie tightknit circle
What better way to express creativity than to refer to playfulness and apply an approach directly aimed at making one smile. This would not sound too ‘out of the ordinary’ were it not employed to create luxurious jewels. Unlike most other joailliers, who treat luxury literally as a serious affair, Swiss designer Suzanne Syz revels in breaking certain codes of the Haute Joaillerie tightknit circle. Not in a radical manner, rather with a canny eye for unconventional designs and experimentation, a respectful touch when it comes to gems, in the sense that they are often treated as Nature intended, and a fun spirit all around. The latter can be found as much in the names, which could easily pass for romantic song titles – Sex On the Beach ring, Moon and Sun Play It Fun ring –, borrow from ordinary treats – Smarties bracelet – or evoke dreamlike escapism – The Caribbean Beauty and Summer Breeze necklaces; as in the visual marketing of the pieces themselves – a shot shows the Lady in Red ring (in titanium set with Burmese cabochon spinel and pink sapphires) worn over none other than turquoise Mapa gloves. Is it another way to tell us that once you own a Suzanne Syz’s jewel, you hardly can part with it, even if this means whilst doing the dishes? The artful clash of colours, the union of high and lowbrow, the unexpected marriage between the exceptional and the mundane: this could all sum-up Suzanne Syz’s philosophy. In addition, all the elements that spell ultimate luxury are at the core of her practice. Superlative craftsmanship? Check. Exquisite designs? Check. Confidential service? Check, during the public fairs or private events her small team organizes around the world or better ‘by appointment only’ in her Geneva purple boudoir, a cocooning space with lilac walls and green carpet, surrounded by Suzanne’s private Artworks (‘a wonderful escape form the grey walls of the city’, she quips). And to top it all: each piece is a one-off. Even with the more replicable series such as the Life Savers one – under the ‘Pop’ theme, turning the idea of donut shaped candies into diamond studded, colourfully enamelled gold and silver is genius in its desirability -, a best selling line for which Suzanne had to make sure no two combinations of colours were similar, keeping the promise that each customer ended up owning a unique rendition. ‘Ideas come in many different situations: blocked at JFK during a storm and in need of some sugar, I bought some Life Savers sweets and thought it would be a great idea for earrings. This other time, in front of a hip hop video clip, I spotted some barbwire that became an element in a design’, Suzanne says,’or just walking my dogs in the countryside. Then I go back to my office and sit down with my ateliers. I explain to them what I want. Then, we work directly on the piece and they come back and forth to show me the piece. I correct the mistakes or looks until it is perfect, as in my mind.’ An avid and reputable Art collector, Suzanne is a self-described autodidact when it comes to jewellery design. It all started with her passion for stones, and as a client for high-end jewels herself, she felt she had to delve further into the industry by travelling to meet the best dealers and workshops across the world, an exploratory as well as life changing journey, which now allows her to produce the best quality designs under her own name.
| DECEMBER 2015
Discover the issue 16 of the Jewellery Historian, the "Best kept secret in the world of luxury".