Designing Eye
Calligraphy of the Heart

Cynthia Renee has visited Spain many times over the years to stay with her brother, who maintains a home in the ancient country. From her first visit, her designer’s heart was captivated by the Moorish design motifs she saw in the great medieval cities. Art and architecture were drawn not only from the Arabic cultures that inhabited Spain in the Middle Ages, but also from Greco-Roman, Berber, and Visigoth traditions.

During the 13th and 14th centuries, there was a particularly intense flowering of intricate designs and exquisite calligraphy. Art was also profoundly influenced by the pursuit of mathematical, philosophical, and scientific knowledge that defined that moment in Spanish culture.

"Calligraphy of the Heart" by Jewelry Designer Cynthia Renée.

Nowhere did this great art reach its zenith more than at the Alhambra, a complex of buildings strategically situated on a hill overlooking the city of Granada in southern Spain. Built over a span of time from the 9th to the 14th centuries, its structures epitomize the Moorish style, with pierced screens, arabesques, calligraphy, tile, mosaic, and stone work.

But Cynthia found, in her walks and travels over the years, that great art was everywhere to be seen – not just in castles and royal structures. One day, she came upon an ancient Spanish church, and there, upon the door, was a bolt that captivated her. The memory haunted her until she was able to take up her sketching pencils and render her memory into a jewel inspired by that design and many others she has seen on her repeated trips. These Calligraphy earrings celebrate the great meeting of cultures and minds that characterized medieval Spain.

Calligraphy” earrings in 18 karat white gold featuring 12.20 ct. pair of vivid Blue Zircon accented by 1.43 cts. of Tsavorite garnets; “swan-neck” wire with locking back.
Carved Jade Drop Earrings in 18 karat blackened white gold featuring 18.27 carats pair of hand-carved, natural Icy White Jade accented by 200 pieces Green Sapphire weighing 7.17 carats; post w/ friction nut.


See Cynthia Renée's custom jewelry design portfolio here.


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