Andrea Buccellati, Honorary Chairman and Creative Directorof the eponymous Italian high jewellery brand, was born in Milan, Italy, the second son of Gianmaria Buccellati and grandson of Mario Buccellati, the founder of the Company. In the tradition of a company that has prized family values since it was established in 1919, he in turn is charged with preserving the brand’s stylistic identity by reviving centuries-old goldsmithing traditions in high jewellery, passing on his creative knowledge to his daughter, co-Creative Designer, Lucrezia.
From the moment Andrea Buccellati began working for the family company—eventually taking over from his father as President and Creative Director of the Buccellati Group in 2013—his creative instinct drew him to the designing of the jewels themselves. In this way, the core hallmark of the Buccellati brand was conserved: each item is the result of the inspiration of a family member. Andrea represents the third generation of Buccellati designers and has guaranteed the continuity of this flow of creativity. He brings his masterpieces to life in true Buccellati tradition, overseeing the production of each piece, some of which can take months to perfect. With a nod to current trends that maintains a sense of modernity in his creations, Andrea remains a supporter of preserving the traditions and sources of inspiration that rendered Buccellati a globally renowned brand: the Italian Renaissance, Art Deco, the architectonical elements of Classicism and nature.
The brand honed its craft over decades, eventually widening its creativity to silver objects (and recently, watches), most of them one-of-a-kind creations and all marked with the typical style which is admired for its timeless beauty all over the world. Andrea’s father, Gianmaria (1929–2015), passionately learned the meticulous craftsmanship, and was most notably the driving force behind Buccellati, as he started to work as an apprentice with his own father from a very young age, following in his footsteps. In 1966, Gianmaria took over the management of the workshops and the creative side of the company: he conceived and designed every piece coming out of his ateliers, just as Andrea does today, alongside Lucrezia. Gianmaria worked with his brother, Luca, sharing with him the vision of turning Buccellati into a worldwide jewellery powerhouse. A pioneer like his father in the US (who had expanded internationally with a store on 51st Street New York in 1951), Gianmaria was the first Italian jeweller to set up a shop in Hong Kong in 1970, followed by Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya in the next few years. In 1979, the House became the first Italian brand to launch a boutique in the world famous Place Vendôme in Paris, where it remained until January 2016, before moving to the legendary jewellers’ street, Rue de la Paix.
On the business front, Cressida acquired a 67 per cent stake in Buccellati in 2013, the remainder being retained by the family, a successful move that provided finance to improve distribution networks, strengthen management and refresh the brand’s image, and which resulted in a 60 per cent growth in revenue. Looking ahead, as every family business must, Andrea Buccellati continues to blend the contemporary and the traditional, not only with the launch of collections such as Opera, aimed at Buccellati’s growing band of younger customers, but by establishing a workshop school for trainees to study the intricate Buccellati techniques that can take five to ten years to master. Buccellati is the Italian ‘bottega’ of Renaissance times brought into the twenty-first century and, with Andrea Buccellati at the helm for this generation, way beyond.