When Charles Lewis Tiffany opened his first store in 1837 in New York City, selling “fancy goods” imported from Paris, he could not have imagined the visions of glamour that his name would conjure around the world. Tiffany & Co. has transformed from a modest purveyor of gift items to a globally renowned byword for luxury and romance, sublime and rare gemstones, joyful objects of love and an inimitable mix of tradition and modernity. Tiffany is a name that resonates across generations and cultures, part of the fabric of social and cultural history, an American institution gifted to the world, an emporium of escapism, a repository of dreams.
During its 185 years, Tiffany & Co. has continued to evolve creatively, embracing artistic and cultural influences, finding exciting ways to renew its rich legacy. Since the 1950s, Tiffany has brought on designers who have become iconic names, from Jean Schlumberger to Elsa Peretti and Paloma Picasso, ensuring that Tiffany remains dynamic and relevant to each generation. The company’s design-driven dynamism honors and perpetuates the founder’s pioneering spirit.
Today Tiffany continues to bring fantasy to its annual high jewelry collections, while also speaking to new generations through original collections that offer personal self-expression, so much part of Charles Lewis Tiffany’s original concept. The beat goes on, the pulse of New York and of creativity, the quest for modernity and originality intertwined with reverence for Tiffany’s great heritage.
Conceived as the catalog to accompany the exhibition Vision and Virtuosity at the Saatchi Gallery in London, this Assouline volume, available in both Icon and Ultimate editions, encapsulates all the romance and heritage of this world-famous American icon, highlighting Tiffany’s creative inspirations, witty advertisements and window displays, Blue Book jewel collections and diamond expertise, plus the stories behind the blue box, the classic film Breakfast at Tiffany’s and the fabulous yellow Tiffany Diamond.
Jewelry historian Vivienne Becker is an award-winning journalist and author of many books on the history of jewelry design. Based in London, Becker is a contributing editor to Financial Times How to Spend It magazine, writes for newspapers and magazines around the world, and lectures and broadcasts on her subject. She organized and wrote the catalog for the first major exhibition of the jewelry of René Lalique, and curated Jewels of Fantasy, a traveling exhibition of twentieth-century costume jewelry. Becker’s previous books with Assouline include The Impossible Collection of Jewelry (2012), Bulgari: The Joy of Gems—Magnificent High Jewelry Creations (2017) and Cipullo: Making Jewelry Modern (2020).
Fashion editor André Leon Talley (1948–2022) was a Vogue contributing editor and the magazine’s former American editor at large. In 2014 he was named artistic director of Zappos Couture, and was on the board of trustees of Savannah College of Art and Design since 2000. The author of several books, including Valentino (1982), A.L.T.: André Leon Talley (2003), Little Black Dress (2013) and The Chiffon Trenches: A Memoir (2020), Talley was awarded the Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres from the French Republic in 2020 and the North Carolina Governor’s Award for Literature, 2021.