Important Silversmiths - Buccellati
Mario Buccellati was born in Milan in 1891. His father died when he was only fourteen and he started working to support his family. He was apprenticed to the jewellery firm Beltrami & Beltrami, based in Milan.
After having fought in the First World War Mario went back to Milan and took over the firm Beltrami & Beltrami, founding his company in 1919. His mark (‘15 MI’) is one of the firsts to be issued by the Milan assay office.
In 1921 he exhibited in Madrid gaining international popularity. Royal families, aristocrats and movie stars became lifelong clients. Gabriele D’Annunzio, an important Italian writer, commissioned him hundreds of pieces and dubbed him ‘Prince of goldsmiths’.
In 1925 Buccellati opened a branch in Rome, in via Condotti, and four years later a new one in Florence. During the Fifties the company opened a shop in New York and one in Palm Beach.
When Mario died in 1965 four of his five sons took over the company but they split the business after a few years: Lorenzo and Frederico became responsible for the stores in Italy, Luca for the American branches while Gianmaria launched a new brand, Gianmaria Buccellati, gaining immediate success. In 1979 Gianmaria Buccellati opened his flagship store in Paris, Place Vendome and his company became one of the most prestigious luxury firms worldwide. The firm kept expanding, it is still active nowadays and finally the two family branches have been reunited.
Buccellati has always been synonymous with luxury and exceptional quality. Its silver objects draw inspiration by Renaissance and nature and are characterised by rich textures: Mario was in fact the first to introduce some of the finest hand-engraving techniques such as rigato, segrinato, ornato and modellato. The use of these techniques make its pieces very difficult to imitate and immediately recognisable to the expert collectors.