Robert Goossens, or Monsieur Bijou as he was called in France, was the chief jeweler of the legendary French fashion houses. His jewelry and accessories have always been very innovative and bold – on the verge of art and jewelry, merging the soul of an artist with the hands of an artisan. He used metal elements framed in gold; inlays with precious and semi-precious stones mixed with wood, pearls, leather or marble. His favorite material was rock crystal.
Goossens was founded in 1950, and for almost 70 years now, this brand has been embodying the dreams and fantasies of high fashion designers. Robert Goossens mastered the art of goldsmithing from early childhood, helping his father, who owned a foundry in the Marais in Paris.
His true love was jewelry, especially the rough, antique items of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, which he met in the museums of Paris. Robert wanted to create something similar, something that would be different from modern jewelry. At the age of 25, he begins working with fashion houses. His pieces from that period are now known as “couture jewelry”.
Gabrielle Chanel, met Goossens in 1953. She was delighted with his works, inspired by the art of Byzantium, Ancient Egypt and other ancient cultures. When he first showed the Grand Mademoiselle his creations, influenced by reproductions of Visigothic and Etruscan jewelry, she exclaimed: “They are magnificent – if people ask who created them, we will answer that they were found at the excavations on the Rue Cambon!” After this meeting, Goossens became the official creator of jewelry for the house of Chanel.
Cooperation with Coco did not pass without a trace for Robert. The spirit of mischief and hooliganism, the desire to violate generally accepted concepts and the constant expansion of the boundaries of creation with an unexpected combination of forms and materials, both noble and rude – that’s what made his work brilliant. Like Coco Chanel, the young master connected the worlds of jewelry and bijouterie.
Goossens himself wrote that he spent a lot of time talking with Mademoiselle Chanel. She supported his desire for experimentation, and it was she who inspired Robert to work with interior design. Already in 1972, a department with designer furniture was officially opened in the Goossens House.
After the death of Robert Goossens, his son Patrick and daughter Martina continued his business.