Franco Cannilla
Italian, 1911-1985

Italian sculptor and painter Franco Cannilla was also a talented jewelry maker. Although he was recognized internationally for his art, Cannilla’s jewels were a more intimate expression of his practice. These pieces were oftentimes produced in small or limited quantities and are regarded as true expressions of his art—small sculptures that were intended to be worn, or as Alexander Calder described, “living works of art.” Best known for his unique and ornate jewelry designs, often in gold, Cannilla first exhibited his jewelry in Milan in 1949. His career was prolific, and also featured many successful collaborations with other Italian designers.

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