I have interviewed Gurhan several times over the years, and always walk away from our encounters with a new sense of this extraordinary man’s passion for creating one-of-a-kind pieces of jewellery. His individual hand-hammered pieces and his collections both have a strong sense of history and yet remain resolutely contemporary.
Originally from Istanbul, that melting pot of Asian and European culture that gave birth to the magnificent opulence of the Ottoman Empire, Gurhan jewellery blends the very best of Turkish tradition with modern western design, often incorporating ancient artefacts such as micro mosaics, Roman coins or pieces of armour.
Gurhan is probably best known in the jewellery world for pioneering the revival of pure 24 carat gold jewellery. In modern times, jewellers had decreed that this purest form of gold was too soft to work with. But Gurhan’s research into ancient techniques led to renewal of its use within fine jewellery, centuries after these skills were lost and forgotten.
Now based in New York, the Gurhan brand has a huge celebrity following in the States but is still relatively unknown in the UK. That is about to change as Gurhan has launched in Harrods with a mix of the high-end pure gold pieces with new collections that fuse pure gold with sterling silver.
The silver collections, which are all hand crafted and hammered in Istanbul and have the same design ethos as Gurhan’s gold collections, are created in white and dark silver with a kiss of pure gold.
Bold and daring bracelets, cuffs and rings mirror the armour of ancient times, while the organic shapes of lentils and wheat motifs look fresh in a tri-tonal combination of white and dark sterling silver with touches of gold. This is Bohemian luxury at its very best: for women who are looking for fine jewellery that is out of the ordinary and has a sense of history, soul and spirituality yet is utterly, utterly wearable.