THE MAISON DES MÉTIERS D’ART
Preserve, innovate and share exceptional expertise: this is the mission of the Maison des Métiers d’Art, a laboratory situated in La Chaux-de-Fonds. The work carried out here looks as much to the past - in search of techniques, methods and renderings - as it does to the future when creating new crafts or adapting tools and practices to new requirements.
THE ART OF METAL
The art of metalwork belongs to Cartier's founding craft: jewellery. Gold filigree, gold bead granulation and engraving can be found in the Maison's repertoire of expertise. Expert practices which today are mastered by a new generation of Cartier artisans.
THE ART OF FIRE
At La Chaux-de-Fonds, the master enameller becomes an expert in traditional techniques such as cloisonné, champlevé, plique-à-jour and grisaille enamel, as well as techniques that the Maison des Métiers d’Art has developed or revived, for example gold paste enamelling, filigree enamelling or enamel granulation, which differs from other enamelling techniques due to the fact that the enamel beads, or balls, are created using a blowtorch, not in a kiln. It takes almost 30 hours to create an enamelled dial and the piece needs to be fired in the kiln around 10 to 15 times to obtain the different shades.
THE ART OF COMPOSITION
Marquetry, the art of assembling tiny pieces of wood, straw or other materials, each with their own distinct colour and shape, to create a precise design. Complex work that requires dexterity and precise movements taking around 50 hours to create a marquetry dial. On average, 200 pieces of straw or wood are needed to recreate the designer’s vision.
Preserve, innovate and share exceptional expertise: this is the mission of the Maison des Métiers d’Art, a laboratory situated in La Chaux-de-Fonds.