A new gem show entices the cream of contemporary jewellers to Geneva

GemGenève opens its gilded doors in Geneva tomorrow. The brainchild of an elite band of industry dealers and collectors, it promises to be a curated gem of a trade show offering a fresh perspective on today’s high jewellery world – an elite universe where collectors, experts, clients and connoisseurs converge. ‘We want GemGenève to become not only a vibrant trading place, but also an educational experience, a place where, each year, people come to discover new talents, new stories and undiscovered treasures,’ says Ida Faerber of the Faerber family, the renowned antique jewellery experts who lend to museums and galleries across the world and who spurred the show’s creation. From diamond and fine-pearl merchants to antique jewellery dealers and uniquely skilled craftsmen, GemGenève is designed to be as elegant and refined as you’d expect, but with an eye on the best in modern jewellery design too. Here’s our preview of the Contemporary Designer Showcase curated by jewellery historian and author Vivienne Becker:

Belmacz ring

(Image credit: Julia Muggenburg)

Belmacz, by Julia Muggenburg
German-born, London-based artist Julia Muggenburg studied at London’s St Martin’s School of Art, choosing jewellery as her preferred mode of expression. Muggenburg’s pieces are singular in that they combine fashion, art, and design, into a distinct ‘modern-heritage’ style that is all her own. She operates the Belmacz art gallery in central London.

Ring by Belmacz

GemGenève is on view from 10-13 May, at Palexpo, Geneva

Cora Sheibani necklace

(Image credit: Cora Sheibani)

Cora Sheibani
The Swiss born, London-based jewellery designer is a long-term Wallpaper* favourite. Her ‘table jewel’ design for the 2015 Wallpaper Handmade exhibition was a playful take on the pudding course – she designed a sizeable chain of silver dessert bowls, in collaboration with traditional Edinburgh silversmith Hamilton & Inches, who hand-chased the entire piece. Sheibani doesn’t approach jewellery as art but as pure design, moulding line, form, colour, material and texture into a distinctive whole.

Necklace by Cora Sheibani

GemGenève is on view from 10-13 May, at Palexpo, Geneva

Hannah Martin ring

(Image credit: Hannah Martin)

Hannah Martin
Just over a decade after she established her contemporary fine jewellery house, Hannah Martin continues to rise above the norm with expertly considered designs that shimmer with a fine art sensibility. A trained goldsmith, her influences range from the surreal fetish photography of French artist Pierre Molinier and the 'contradictions within the role and meaning of the jewel, particularly between the ownership – or possession'  that so often defines a worn jewel. The pull between constraint and freedom in the physical attributes of the jewel are a recurring theme.

Ring by Hannah Martin

GemGenève is on view from 10-13 May, at Palexpo, Geneva

Fabio Salini ring

(Image credit: Fabio Salini)

Fabio Salini
Working from his studio in Rome, Salini’s jewellery style is rooted in modernism, with an emphasis on 1970s forms. His architectural perspective on form combines with rich contrasts of precious and poor materials, radiant and matt textures and unexpected components, such as carbon fibre, leather, ebony, bronze and copper. His mission? To create an 'entirely new language for precious jewellery'. 

Earrings by Fabio Salini

GemGenève is on view from 10-13 May, at Palexpo, Geneva

Caragh McKay is a contributing editor at Wallpaper* and was watches & jewellery director at the magazine between 2011 and 2019. Caragh’s current remit is cross-cultural and her recent stories include the curious tale of how Muhammad Ali met his poetic match in Robert Burns and how a Martin Scorsese Martin film revived a forgotten Osage art.