Mario Buccellati (1891-1965) opened his first shop in Milan, 1919. The business grew successfully, despite the cataclysmic upheavals of war raging for a second time that decade through Europe. Throughout the first decade of Buccellati’s business he established premises in Milan, Rome and Florence. In 1949 Mario received a very special commision. Pope Pius XII requested Buccellati create an icon for Princess Margaret as a gift to make the first British Royal visit to Vatican City.
Jewellery Maker Profile: Buccellati
In 1951, Mario opening his first New York store, with his son, Luca. The company received success in the States, opening a second New York store in 1954, this time on Fifth Avenue.
Of Mario’s five sons, Gianmaria (1929-2015) inherited the deepest love and understanding for the jewellery trade. In 1971, Gianmaria launched his own branch of the company, ‘Gianmaria Buccellati’. Two years later, in 1973, Gianmaria, founded the Italian Gemological Institute (IGI), becoming President for the next 25 years. Six years later, in 1979, Gianmaria opens Buccellati’s first Paris store. With this move, Buccellati took their place among the world’s most prestigious jewellers on the Place Vendôme.
In 2003, the majority stake of the Buccellati Group was sold to the Italian investment fund, Clessidra. Gianmaria’s children continued to run the operation of the business with Andrea as President, Gino managing silver production and Maria Cristina directing the brand’s image and communication. In 2019, Richemont announced its acquisition of a 100% share in Buccellati Holding.
Italian at Heart
At its core Buccellati is deeply Italian and family remains at its heart. Traditionally only family members create designs for the firms jewels. Within all Buccellati designs is interwoven a subtle reference to the great artistic heritage of the company’s birth-place Italy. The ‘Animalier’ collection is an example of Buccellati’s revival of Italy’s artistic past. Including twenty-eight brooches of insects and animals, the creature’s bodies have been ingeniously designed to emerge from exceptional baroque pearls. The collections includes the using the intricate ‘fur and feathers’ technique. The company launched its first watch collection in 2001.
‘The Art of Buccellati’ at San Francisco Academy of Sciences in 1995.
‘Buccellati: Art in Gold, Silver and Gems’ at Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC, in 2000.
‘Buccellati Timeless Art’ at The State Museum of Moscow Kremlin, in 2008.