In Conversation With Tiffany

Jeweler Hosts Panel on the Art of Storytelling at the New Whitney Museum

Panelists In Conversation with Tiffany
Panelists In Conversation with Tiffany, The Art of Storytelling, Whitney Museum. From left: Adam Weinberg, Alice Pratt Brown Director of the Whitney Museum; Francesca Amfitheatrof, Tiffany design director; Reese Witherspoon, actress and producer; Matthew Miele, documentary filmmaker; moderator Amy Fine Collins, special correspondent to Vanity Fair. Click for more information

Tiffany & Co. hosted the first in a series of panel discussions titled In Conversation with Tiffany, which brings together creative talents from diverse fields to share insights on themes of common interest. The initial conversation, the Art of Storytelling, was held in the Susan and John Hess Theater, at the new Whitney Museum of American Art, located at 99 Gansevoort Street in Manhattan’s Meatpacking District, and set to open to the public on May 1.

Whitney Museum of American Art
Whitney Museum of American Art. Click for more information

“ We’re here to inaugurate the partnership between our two great institutions,” said Adam D. Weinberg, the Alice Pratt Brown Director of the Whitney Museum, referring to Tiffany’s recent agreement with the museum to be the lead sponsor of the Whitney Biennial in 2017, 2019 and 2021. The 2017 exhibition will be the first held in the new Whitney Museum. Tiffany CEO Frédéric Cumenal added, “ We are thrilled to support the Whitney Biennial in giving emerging artists exposure on a global scale, and to bring new ideas in art, design and popular culture to the forefront.”

Amy Fine Collins, special correspondent to Vanity Fair, moderated the panel, which included Reese Witherspoon, Oscar®-winning actress and producer; Matthew Miele, documentary filmmaker; Francesca Amfitheatrof, Tiffany design director; and Weinberg. “ Each of our distinguished panelists is a master storyteller,” she said. “ Through their work in art, acting and film production, documentaries and jewelry design, they all tell stories.”

«Peyton Satchel» by Tiffany. In textured leather with palladium-plated solid brass hardware. Gray cotton lining with a light teal-lined interior zipper compartment, two open pockets and an exterior open pocket. Zipper closure. Click to buy

Reese Witherspoon discussed purchasing the movie rights to the bestseller Wild and her Oscar®-nominated role as its author Cheryl Strayed in the 2014 film. “ It was so exciting to bring her story to the screen,” she said. “ Here’s a woman who goes on a thousand-mile journey by herself and ends up with no man, no moneyit’s a happy ending.” Witherspoon also produced the film version of the bestseller Gone Girl, which gave her “ the opportunity to create a role for a woman that is complex. I think it’s important for women all over the world to see diversity on screen and more complex roles for women.”

«Serena Clutch» by Tiffany., In smooth leather with palladium-plated solid brass hardware. Gray cotton lining with one interior zip pocket, two small open pockets and a top zipper compartment. Snap closure. Click to buy

To Collins’ question about the stories the new Whitney might tell, Weinberg said “ this whole site will inspire new work,” pointing to the museum’s spacious indoor and outdoor areas as exciting spaces for artists’ creativity. He recalled another such space, the Tiffany Workshop, where he saw photos of abstract paintings at a craftsman’s workstation that reinforced the museum’s collaboration with Tiffany. “ I was fascinated by someone working on a jewel and then glancing up at the work of Willem de Kooning and Barnett Newman,” he said. As seen through a jeweler’s loop, the jewelry itself becomes abstract, he suggested, leading him to conclude that “ jewelry design and painting are not so far apart.”

«Samethyst Cocktail Ring» by Tiffany. A collection of Tiffany gemstones cut to maximize each captivating color. Ring with an emerald-cut amethyst in sterling silver. Click to buy

In creating her first Blue Book Collection for Tiffany & Co., design director Francesca Amfitheatrof chose the sea as inspiration. “ It was important to continue the Blue Book tradition,” she said, referring to the collection’s legacy as Tiffany’s greatest showcase for its most magnificent jewels. She also stressed the importance of reconnecting with nature, long a theme of Tiffany design, and searching the company’s archives for stories of Tiffany’s rich history. It is these stories, she said, that set her on the path of discovery.

«Bird on a Rock Clip» by Tiffany. Since its introduction in 1965, Bird on a Rock has been one of Schlumberger’s most iconic pieces. This smaller version features a prodigious aquamarine with diamonds and a sapphire in platinum and 18k gold. Click to buy

Mathew Miele, director of an independent documentary film on Tiffany & Co. that is yet to be released, described interviewing over 100 people over a two-year period to find “ just the right interviews and sound bites” that would make the Tiffany story come alive on screen. As an example, he said he was “ blown away” by a sales professional’s very special memory of the Tiffany Diamond, as well as such artifacts as tourists’ postcards from the 19th century, which detailed visits to the Statue of Liberty and Tiffany & Co. “ This is a company founded in 1837,” Miele said. Documenting it is “ thrilling and humbling at the same time.”

«As leaders in the jewelry industry, we believe there is both a business imperative and a moral obligation to look beyond our own business practices to support responsible behavior throughout the entire jewelry supply chain.», Art of the Sea Collection. Click for more information

Tiffany is the internationally-renowned jeweler founded in New York in 1837. Through its subsidiaries, Tiffany & Co. manufactures products and operates TIFFANY & CO. retail stores worldwide, and also engages in direct selling through Internet, catalog and business gift operations.

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