What skills are required to be a jeweller?
The crafting of certain pieces requires excellent knowledge of chemical reactions and electricity, in addition to the usual jewellery-related skills. People easily imagine physicists or chemists to have that type of knowledge, but are surprised to see them in a jeweller.
What special machines do you use?
My stamping machine was made in 1916 by a Swiss company that still exists. I built my welding robot myself and programmed it with the help of a professional in 2018. I use both – as well as many others – on a daily basis.
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Have you always had a workshop in Geneva?
Yes. I opened it in 1993, and my wife Ioana joined me in 2015. It combines a workshop in the rear and underground space, with an exhibition area in the front. That’s why we call it a gallery-workshop, because we sell what we produce here.
What advice would you give to a young jeweller starting out?
I sometimes feel sorry for the younger generations, because the studies for this craft are much less hands-on now. So while young people bring good background knowledge, they often lack insight into the craft itself. I advise them to work on the materials physically to understand them. Try, fail, start again, persevere.