Eugène Feilètre (1870 – 1916) is known for the beauty and quality of his enamel work, which he carried out to adorn both jewelry and Art Nouveau furnishings.
Born in Dunkirk, Northern France, in 1870, Feliètre worked as an apprentice goldsmith before continuing his apprenticeship with the enamelists Etienne Tourette and Louis Huillon. He was a gifted jeweler and sculptor, but it was the art of enamelling that captured his imagination and he experimented a lot with different materials and techniques. This allowed Feliètre to achieve the blurry, milky-pearl tones that are so characteristic of his work.
From 1890 to 1897, he was in charge of the enamel workshop of René Lalique, who created some of the most iconic jewelery of the period, in which enamel – in particular the plique à jour – played a significant role.
He opened his own business in 1898 in a workshop at 3 rue Villedot, near the Palais Royal in the 1st arrondissement of Paris. He created pieces for well-known jewelry firms, including the American firm Tiffany & Co.
At the 1900 World’s Fair in Paris, his work attracted the attention of Louis Comfort Tiffany, who was a big fan of the enamelling technique. The archives show that Feliètre supplied his work for sale to Tiffany & Co. Some of them have since been in the company’s collection and are double-labeled – Felière and Tiffany.
Feliètre is well known for his skill and technical experimentation with enamel, and he demonstrated a range of beautiful effects in his silver and gold jewellery. Many of his works are in private collections and museums such as the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Musée d’Orsay. Feuilletre enlisted in the army in 1914 and died in 1916.