Eyes on John Derian & Astier de Villatte


Lovers’ eyes were a style of miniature paintings popular during the late 18th century. Each picture was secretly commissioned for illicit lovers, and portrayed a single eye of the loved one. Often these paintings were done on ivory and framed with other precious stones, so the treasured gift could be worn as a broach, pendant, or ring. Not many of these pieces exist today, but the few that do are stunning.

Last night, a few Dempsey & Carrollites attended an event celebrating John Derian’s partnership with Astier de Villatte, and were amused when we received buttons with eyes on them as a favor. Knowing John’s smart and eclectic design style through our own collaboration with him in 2010, perhaps this favor was a modern take on the secret tradition. The night continued to entertain us, and we loved seeing John’s decoupage twist on Astier de Villatte’s classic Parisian ceramics. While the new pieces aren’t available online yet, you can see more about the collaboration and John’s other pieces on his website. In the meantime, we’re going to try not to get too lovestruck over the eyes we were given Tuesday night…

Poppy Lyttle


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