When Pomellato decided to launch its first high jewellery collection there would be one man responsible for bringing the vision to life.
Alongside his team, Creative Director Vincenzo Castaldo worked on La Gioia to make this vision of joy a reality. Castaldo is the first to credit his team of artisans, but it is also down to his creativity and eye for innovation that allows these unique pieces to become a reality.
In his role as Creative Director, Castaldo is responsible for the overall aesthetic output of Pomellato, continuously updating and evolving the house’s distinctive codes. Working in close tandem with the artisans and the gems master, Vincenzo Castaldo materializes the Pomellato values in tangible objects that break the rules while addressing a clientele of self-confident, independent women who see beauty – and beautiful objects – as tools of self-empowerment, but who also have an easy, spontaneous way of wearing precious things. Spending eight years with this band has allowed him to discover every aspect of its DNA and ensured that now would be the perfect time to delve into the world of high jewellery.
To discuss just that and take a look at the collection in more detail A&E talks to Vincenzo Castaldo.
It seems the high jewellery collection was born at a time when we all need joy in our lives?
When we launched it was perfect timing because we were in an unexpected scenario. As you can imagine we had planned long ago how we would launch the collection but everything changed with what happened around the world. But I do believe it was a perfect moment for us to share this collection with the world.
Tell us more about the collection and the story of how it came to life?
We started to work on the collection more than a year ago. The intention was not to create a traditional high jewellery collection but find our own style or language. We wanted to invent ourselves in a new way. What I love is that the result is perfectly aligned with our philosophy. The new collection is lively, contemporary and it has a playful attitude which is very Pomellato. We wanted to create a new dynamic, high jewellery philosophy. For the first chapter, we want to celebrate our own story. We were born in 1967 and we have had so many inspirations in our history, so this is the perfect occasion and project to celebrate what Pomellato is. It celebrates our passion for sensual volumes – you will never find geometry in our jewels. We love to work with new shapes and designs and then we have the playful and emotional side with the colours. So it has been a fascination with our specific codes and blending these in a new inclusive way. The unconventional style is more of an attitude. When you work on a very high-end collection you can express and create without limits, so for me, it was like being back at kindergarten as I could play with different stones without restrictions and without having to worry about quantity or numbers. So it’s much more artistic and individual.
If you look back at Pomellato’s history – what part of the story do you always find yourself attracted to?
I remember I saw Pomellato for the first time when I still worked in fashion so my initial view was as an outsider. I was very intrigued by the use of colours – it was joyful and artistic and I loved the combination of colours that the brand created with its collections. Another important aspect that is interesting for me is the beautiful shapes and how they are always feminine and very natural. There is this kind of spontaneous attitude in the shapes and volume. You can feel the human touch and it’s something very natural, organic and pure. This pureness is very important to me. I would never create something for Pomellato that is rigid because there is always this softness associated with the brand. Every single part of the jewel for me is important down to the last details.
As a creative person what inspires you and when are you at your most creative state of mind?
Inspiration can be found in very strange places. Art, design, fashion etc. can be very inspiring but it can be more about a colour, attitude or trend. Anything in life can be inspiring. The really important thing is the way you observe what’s around you. Because sometimes an unexpected shape or a combination of elements can inspire you. I like to observe, but observing is different than seeing. It requires a kind of meditation or contemplation. In this kind of exercise, you can understand the different proportion of things together. If you take your time to really see what is going on around you, you will discover different things that can be very inspiring. It’s something very difficult to describe.
What can you tell us about how important it is for a brand to maintain one coherent design DNA?
It’s very important as the DNA of a brand is a kind of calligraphy or style. When you have your own calligraphy, you can write a new chapter, but your story will remain coherent. You never have to betray your own style. You can explore, of course, that’s my job, but with the approach and mindset of the brand. For Pomellato this style is very clear to me after eight years, but every day I discover something new, something that can be Pomellato in a new way. It’s a never-ending exercise that’s very important for the brand. Pomellato has a very strong identity that’s clear to me and our clients. Our clients can recognise every single trait and part of our aesthetic attitude. That makes me very proud.
What was your favourite piece from the High Jewellery collection?
I have a special relationship with the Gourmette Cameleon. It is a work of art and there is an amazing selection of coloured stones in this piece. We looked to find as much colour as possible for the chain. It is composed of 29 links and my dream was to have each link in a different colour – we have 27 colours – two links are in white diamond and the clasp is in gold. It was a challenge for my team to create this piece and find these coloured stones and it turned out to be a journey around the world because every coloured stone came from a different region. We have never done anything like this before and it was a really special experience that embodied the real love and passion in the brand.
The Sabbia Mesh choker is also another one of my favourites. Firstly it’s very comfortable because it is like a precious fabric around your neck. It’s very feminine but at the same time, there is also something very masculine about it because this style of mesh was born in the Medieval era. So there is this nice compromise between something very feminine and sensual but also at the same time very powerful and protective. Every single link was made by hand and we have great artisans who do this kind of work. I find it a very intriguing material to work with.
What will you take away from this unusual year?
It has been a year to learn many things. Yes, the price was very high but there are some lessons I want to keep in my mind.