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 Michael Bergeron
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Bulgari: 130 Years of Masterpieces

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What: Bulgari: 130 Years of Masterpieces

Where: The Houston Museum of Natural Sciences

Bvlgari Earrings in Platinum with Emeralds and Diamonds - 1964Wherefore: Approximately 150 Bulgari jewels are on display, representing items from as recent as 1884 to the current times. Of particular interest are brooches, necklaces, bracelets, serpent-shaped jewelry, sautoirs, handbags, all illuminated with accompanying photographs.

Individual pieces can take up to 500 hours in development, with the center stone (emerald, ruby, sapphire) alone requiring 200 hours for their proper setting.

Some of the displays are interactive, with motion-activated sensors putting on a light show only to shine a light on the item afterwards. Themes include necklaces with money (Roman, Greek, British, American Silver Dollars) embedded into the finery. I was taken aback by an expensive set of diamond and gem encrusted earrings that Gina Lollobrigida owned, which she donated at an auction for stem cell research.