In an interview with Sotheby's, High Jewelry Designer Édéenne discussed her start in the industry as well as those who influenced her work and more.
When Édéenne was asked when she first knew a career in jewelry design was for her, she said, "After having lived many lives (coming from Montreal to study at Sorbonne University, working in Paris as a festival organizer at Pompidou Center, a movie producer, a CEO’s coach…) my life changed suddenly one day in September, 15 years ago, during my first scuba diving at the Lake Maggiore in the North of Italy. Actually, I had an accident. I went too fast to the surface of the water, after being squeezed into a whirlpool of dust, and my instructor told me that I was obliged to dive again to recover. Against my fear, I went down again. I was so surprised I felt better that I turned around and at this precise moment, the sun created a refraction phenomenon around me. I was surrounded by a rainbow which turned all the rocks underneath into sapphires, rubies, emeralds...it was a sign. I will be a jeweler, even if I knew nothing about this universe before. I took the most golden-looking stone as a memento. Two weeks later I was at the gemology school and I made the 4 year study into 5 months, I was in a rush, I was already 45 at that time. I founded my House of High Jewelery under my name, Édéenne, on 23 December 2003."
"I cannot say that I had a mentor in the industry, my vision was from the beginning too far away," said the designer when asked about her biggest mentors in the industry. "After two years, I went to jewelry school, on rue du Louvre in Paris, and at the first lesson, working with the wax and a file, I discovered that, one, I was there to see how limitless is this world; two, that we can make pieces of art with gold and precious stones and three, that I was a sculptor. From then, I decided instead of looking for 'the' piece that everyone would love around the world, I would spend my time showing what was incredible in each person who would come to see me. Since then, I meet people, asking them many very private questions and, about two or three hours later, I stop him or her, and say that I see. To make it short, I design a piece of High Jewelry that moves me from their life. Like a painter would do a 'portrait', I do it with precious materials. All my work is based on the notion of 'resonance'. I had no mentor in the industry but so many people helped me since fifteen years to believe in my work, in my vision and to keep my faith. I could write a book about that. Well… maybe one day!"
Information originally sourced from Sotheby's.