Have you ever heard about John Hardy? If you haven’t, you’re not alone. I didn’t know much about John Hardy. Even though I walked passed its store several times at the ground floor of Plaza Indonesia, all I know was that the brand sells jewelry. I learned much about John Hardy during an event I attended recently. There I realized that it was a bit embarrassing to be so clueless about this brand.
Images from skyscrapercity.com
What is John Hardy?
The story of John Hardy jewelry started in 1975 when Canadian art student John Hardy moved to Bali and began studying local traditional jewelry-making techniques with a master artisan whose ancestors were goldsmiths among the island’s former royal courts. As he adapted these techniques to fresh and new designs, Hardy formed the company in 1989.
In the early 1990s, John Hardy initiated its first sales relationships with two of the most prestigious department stores in the United States: Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue. And by 1998, Guy Bedarida, a senior designer of haute joaillerie, joined the company as Head Designer and helped develop the John Hardy workshop and design center in the central highlands of Bali.
In 2003, as Damien Dernoncourt joined the company as President, John Hardy started to sell exclusive, one-of-a-kind, pieces in Hong Kong; shortly after, the brand came to be sold in Russia, Japan and Dubai.
About John Hardy’s design
John Hardy jewelry is known for its designs in sterling silver. As signature feature of John Hardy jewelry, the artisans develop oxidized silver. It changes silver, which is the whitest of all metals, into black to create rich design, contrasting color and texture. This technique can be found in collections such as Bamboo, Carved Chain, Dot, Kali, Naga, and Palu.
Another attribute of John Hardy designs is the craftmanship put on the “back grill,” where cut work is etched on the inner surface of a piece of jewelry. The traditional Balinese technique craving or ukiran is employed in both abstract and figurative designs to create jewelry that tells a story. The back grill becomes like a secret story, ensuring the inside of the piece is just as beautiful as the outer surface.
What’s new from John Hardy?
In celebration of Plaza Indonesia’s 22nd anniversary, John Hardy showcased their Spring 2012 collection and a photography exhibition to educate attendees about the brand’s authentic craftsmanship.
The artisanship event that was held on March 13 and 14 at the Main Atrium, Level 1 Plaza Indonesia, included a demonstration of John Hardy’s unique craftsmanship by Balinese artisans. In addition, the photography exhibition also helped to tell the intricate story of the creative design inspirations behind the brand.
There was also a session for an exclusive preview of the latest Cinta collection, presented by Guy Bedarida. ‘Cinta’ is John Hardy’s one-of-a-kind collection, created with gemstones of exceptional character. ‘Cinta’ was conceived by Guy Bederida at the request of John Hardy as a gift for his wife. Each piece is carefully handmade to represent the beauty found in the combination of organic and precious materials.
I am now looking forward to check out John Hardy’s collection every season, as the pieces are truly beautiful!