Cindy Chao’s brilliance unveiled at the Biennale

Cindy Chao presented 12 masterpieces at the Biennale des Antiquaires in Paris that are nothing short of incredible.


Cindy Chao has made a name for herself as one of the outstanding jewellers of the world in the 12 short years since she founded her eponymous jewellery brand. Known for exquisite delicacy, superb stones and mind-boggling intricate perfection, Cindy’s Black Label Masterpiece jewels are as light as feathers. Or, if we use the same gauge as Cindy, as light as macarons.

Take the Phoenix Feather brooch, which, although on fire with 1,000 diamonds in 36 different colours, thanks to its titanium frame weighs a mere 78 grams or two macarons – the flavour unspecified by Cindy. 

The daughter of a respected Taiwanese temple carver, as a child Cindy spent time in her father’s workshop gaining an innate understanding of his art and manual skills and crafts. To this day, Cindy’s jewels are characterised by layers, volume and movement. Defying gravity and belief, her creations are astonishingly light yet every square millimetre, fold, curve, nook and cranny shimmers with precious gems. Tantalisingly beautiful conundrums are Cindy’s speciality, and each time I see one her jewels, I am left wondering how on earth she did it. Be it the ripple of a fish’s tail or the soft fold of a bow tie, shown below, in Cindy’s hands, fleeting moments are crystalised for eternity in precious gems and metals.

The Art Jewel Black Label Bowtie brooch
Cindy’s jewels are characterised by layers, volume and movement, as can be seen here in the Black Label Masterpiece Bowtie brooch.

Seeing is believing, which is why I made a video of the Winter Leaves necklace at the Biennale. Don’t ask me how, but Cindy has spun a web of 6,000 diamonds totalling 250 carats. 

Another Cindy trademark is her annual creation of a butterfly, below. At the Biennale I had the pleasure of seeing the very first and most recent of these creations. But if you were about to grab your phone to order the next model, be patient as they are all sold through to 2020. 

The Art Jewel 2015-16 Ruby Butterfly
A Cindy Chao trademark is her annual creation of a butterfly. This one was produced for 2015-16. 

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