Michael Baumgarten for Vogue

Vogue Gioiello continues to let Michael Baumgarten change the way we look at jewelry. Where he once channeled jewel thief chic he now champions the art of hiding things in pain sight. For his aptly titled Treasures Book editorial, each bauble is hidden between pages of an intricately illustrated natural history text. Vivid drawings of undersea creatures dominate the frame as decadent emeralds sparkle alongside jellyfish. Coral reefs appear near strands of sea blue gemstones and diamonds fade into weathered paper. Each piece of jewelry is built into the pages of the book itself – nestled in the cutouts as though it was simply a part of a particularly decadent page-turner. At first glance the pieces blend so subtly into their background that they appear to be just another layer of the drawings. This mix of the natural and the fantastical, the old and the new is what makes Baumgarten’s work so compelling.

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