Born in 1860 Rene lalik (in the town of AY, Department of Marna), French jeweler
Rene lalik ‘s original jewelery, vibrant with bizarre shapes, caused unprecedented popularity, especially in the artistic circles of Paris. In 1876 he became an apprentice to the goldsmith, continued his education at the School of Decorative Arts in Paris and London workshops. Relatives did not believe in his talent.
Rene drew persistently, offering his watercolors to jewelers, to magazines, to contests and exhibitions … Only by the age of twenty-five he got his own jewelry workshop. Putting aside gold and diamonds, he experimented with amber, enamel, metal alloys, favorite semiprecious stones, horn and turtle shell. Rene Lalique’s spectacular, dynamic, bold, sometimes extravagant jewelry at first shocked the sedate audience, but was soon appreciated and became extremely popular.
Among Lalique’s clients were such famous personalities as the great actress Sarah Bernhardt, the Russian empress Alexandra Feodorovna, the Marquis Arconati Visconti, the wife of the premier Walden-Rousseau and others. Lalique invented innovative methods for jewelry art. He first came up with the idea of using a small pantograph for the production of jewelry – a device for copying plans and drawings, which until that time had been used by sculptors and medalists.
For enamel, Lalique also came up with his signature trick: the jeweler added tiny golden flakes to it, which gave the enamel a magical shine. Rene Lalique experimented a lot with glass. He developed and implemented the injection molding method at the Vinigne-sur-Modery plant.
This is how many of his sculptures, vases, dishes, perfume bottles, lamps and even furniture were made. Unusual colored glass and glass with patina applied on it (colored enamel) are a characteristic feature of Lalique’s works. The recipe for his famous opalescent glass is still a “secret of the firm”.
Lalique applied his talent to the creation of crystal bottles for the perfume company Coty and others (Nina Ricci still uses Lalique crystal bottles). In the last years of his life, Rene was engaged in the design of hotels, churches, restaurants. Light panels, chandeliers, sconces, door panels, columns, serving items, dishes, interior decorations, fountains and much more were produced by the company in 1930-40.
Rene Lalique died on May 5, 1945 in Paris. The company was headed by a son – Marc Lalique, and then a granddaughter, Marie-Claude. In 2010, a major exhibition of Lalique’s works was held in the Moscow Kremlin.