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Angela Cummings Tiffany & Co. Damascened Gold, Silver and Lacquered Iron Cuff Bracelet

Designed in 1978-1979 by Angela Cummings, this Tiffany & Co. lacquered iron cuff bracelet is damascened with 24K yellow and green gold and silver. The open bangle is designed as a gold cuff overlaid with dark lacquered iron, which is inlaid with overlapping circles of 24K yellow and green gold and silver, its edges delineated with lines of gold. This striking bracelet combines abstract design with ancient metalworking techniques, resulting in a piece of modern jewelry that is both cutting edge and casually elegant.

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  • Product Details
  • Curator's Notes

Item #: BA-21148
Artist: Angela Cummings for Tiffany & Co.
Country: United States
Circa: 1978
Materials: 24K Gold and silver; Black lacquered iron
Signed: T&Co., Angela Cummings' maker's mark
Literature: A bracelet of this design appears in the Tiffany & Co. Blue Book for 1978-1979.

Steel or iron that is inlaid with precious metals is known as "damascened". This difficult art was mastered in Ancient Greece, the Ancient Near East as well as Asia and later in 16th century Europe. During the process of damascening, the base metal is made porous in a nitric acid bath, and gold and silver can then be chiseled and hammered into it, after which the metals are heated in caustic soda and potassium nitrate, darkening the surface. In this case, the iron was lacquered, as lacquered surfaces (unlike enamel) offer flexibility without cracking.