ARTIST INTERVIEW: Hortense of Hortense Jewelry
Hortense is a jewelry designer from Paris, France. She moved to California 8 years ago where she completed the Alan Revere Jewelry School in 2004 in San Francisco. She started her own fine jewelry line 5 years ago and was featured in several famous stores in Paris such as Colette and Le Bon Marche, and also in San Francisco at stores such as Dish, Erica Tanov, and Ab Fit. In the last three years, her collections have been sold in far more stores throughout the U.S, Australia, Japan, and Europe. We spoke to Hortense and the inspirations in her background and her creative process.
What is your background and how have your past experiences fed into your art?
I am from France and spent 30 years in Paris and started to study how to make fine jewelry in Paris and in San Francisco at Academy of Art and Alan Revere School. I started my own company 7 years ago. I have been passionate about jewelry since I was a little girl. In Paris I would always go to Place Vendome where the biggest designers are, such as Van Cleef and Arpel, Chaumet, Mauboussin etc..to contemplate all their beautiful jewelry/creations. At that time I was only 10 years old. Now, I can be inspired by a simple object that we use such as a paper clip. I did a paper clip in solid gold for earrings and necklace. I love cats and so I did an exclusive design for Catbird named “Choupette”. I always try to bring a touch of fun in my designs. I love origami and Japan, so I did these new “Origami” earrings, necklace and bracelet in solid gold with or without diamonds.
Do you feel that your environment feeds into work and if so, what makes your work distinctively Californian?
There’s a lot of French inspiration in my designs, classic and timeless with a touch of fun. I am not sure about the Californian touch.
What are your top 3 studio essentials?
My notes and my sketchbooks
The orders all printed from the day before
A good tea and my computer