Complementary perspectives
on the Alhambra collection

Fifty years after the creation of the first Alhambra® long necklace, Van Cleef & Arpels is teaming up with author and journalist Nicholas Foulkes, as well as the Editions Xavier Barral publishing house, for a look back on the emergence of this iconic collection.

Alhambra book cover

Created in the late 1960s – a decade that revolutionized fashion and society as a whole – the first Alhambra long necklace immediately appealed to women. Celebrities and sophisticates wore it, layered it and wrapped it in manifold colorful rows. The pages of Alhambra tell this fabulous story, a tale intimately linked to the creation of the modern silhouette. Presenting documents from the archives of the Maison Van Cleef & Arpels and key "cinematographic" sequences composed by distinguished photographers, the book recounts the influence of the new lifestyles that characterized those years, with the Alhambra collection as a perfect reflection of the period.

© Frederic Aranda

A graduate of Hertford College, Oxford, Nicholas Foulkes is an author and historian. He has published some two dozen books on history, the arts and style. His books include a trilogy of 19th century histories: Scandalous Society, Dancing Into Battle and Gentlemen and Blackguards. A true London dandy, he is fascinated by watches and among the books he has written on horology is the official history of Patek Philippe (Random House, 2016). He is also fascinated by jewels, their history and their making. He has written definitive accounts of the great jewelers Hiroshi Mikimoto (Assouline, 2008) and Nardi (Assouline, 2012). He has written two books on cigars and was named "Havana Man of the Year" in 2007, a title awarded by the Cuban government. In 2016, he published an acclaimed biography of the painter Bernard Buffet (Random House). Nicholas Foulkes is also a journalist, contributing to numerous newspapers and periodicals including Vanity Fair, the Financial Times's "How To Spend It" magazine, GQ and Country Life.

Alhambra. Text by Nicholas Foulkes. Éditions Xavier Barral / Van Cleef & Arpels. Format 22.5 x 29.5 cm. Hardcover book. Approximately 224 pages. Approximately 150 images.