In September 2017, the jeweler Selim Mouzannar opened a new shop dedicated to vintage jewelery, in the historic district of Achrafieh in Beirut, just opposite his eponymous shop which has existed for more than 20 years.
Coming from a family of Lebanese jewelers, suppliers to the Ottoman Empire since the 19th century, during his own lifetime he has acquired multiple experiences in the jewelry field.
From a childhood spent between his father’s workshop cum boutique and the souk of Beirut, he has retained his passion for unique pieces discovered by chance in the disorder of the souk, the frenzy of the treasure hunt, the mystery surrounding the history of each piece of antique jewelry, and the nostalgia for ancestral knowledge which has turned this erstwhile jeweler into an accomplished craftsman, an experienced technician, an eyewitness to his era and a brilliant creator.
From his gemology studies in Paris, he conserved his love of stones and ceaselessly enriched his knowledge from his daily experiences. Nothing makes him dream more than to plunge into the infinite world of precious stones. He knows all their subtleties, their lustre, their flaws, their strengths and all their diversity.
During his daily work in the creation and production of jewelry for his own brand, he experiments ceaselessly with different craftsmen in his workshop for new techniques, new tools and new ideas to dream up his creations. He is the agent of an inheritance in perpetual movement.
From his rich interpretation of the architectural traditions of old Beirut, one can see his passion for the antique jewelry of his two preferred periods: the pivotal Victorian period between the 19th and 20th centuries, and Art Deco at the beginning of the 20th century.
He has a particular preference for the unique patina and delightful quivering of sleepers decorated with rose-cut diamonds, and for the absolute elegance that made famous the signet rings and bracelets of the Art Deco period, in particular those of his teacher René Boivin.
But above all, what pleases Selim Mouzannar in an antique jewel is its poetry, the relationship it weaves between people, between the past generations which wore it and the woman of today who is going to choose it for its personality.
It is all this life which an antique piece of jewelry transports mysteriously within itself: a life of exchanges, experiences, encounters, discoveries, knowledge, this perpetual motion that was the charm of the souk of Beirut of his childhood, which he has reinvented today in his new shop, The Jeweler.