Glenn Curtis is a designer with an underlying ethos that form should follow function. Where Curtis strays from the conventional is that his ideas are often generated from experiences rather than mere observation. Take the Myst Collection – inspired by early morning trips to a nearby reed fringed lake.
The experience of watching dappled sunlight through the lakeside reeds sparked an idea. From this almost ethereal experience came the Myst Collection, where brilliant cut diamonds are overlaid with criss crossing yellow gold, evoking a memorable moment perfectly.
Another startling diamond necklet entitled ‘Flight of Fantasy’, reveals a softer, more organic side to Glenn’s work. This stunning necklet embraces the wearer’s shoulders and neckline, while drawing the eye inevitably to the notable pear shaped champagne diamond at its heart.
Keenly interested in jewellery as a small boy, Glenn remembers taking his early pieces to show his grandfather, also a jeweller. Glenn went on to inherit his grandfather’s precious jewellery tools, many of which are still favoured over their modern equivalents.
In fact, Curtis can trace a heritage across five generations of craftsmanship, when early family settlers made high quality leather goods. An awareness of tradition is still an important aspect of the brand today.
Organisations seeking high end bespoke pieces have also engaged Curtis Australia. With Glenn and the Curtis team going above and beyond at every stage of the process, Curtis Australia can reflect on some impressive commissions.
The Prime Minister’s Literary Awards called on Curtis Australia to create custom sterling silver pens to award winners. Authors including Germaine Greer and Clive James have a Curtis pen – a fitting and lasting reminder of their remarkable success.
World renowned Rio Tinto also asked Curtis to showcase their uniquely Australian Silvermist diamonds in stunning pieces of finely crafted, distinctive jewellery.
Global brands such as Donna Karan have shared prestigious A-list events in world centres with Curtis Australia. The Natural Color Diamond Association have also partnered Curtis Australia at world class jewellery events, displaying uniquely designed diamond set Curtis pieces.
Glenn was the only expert from outside the USA to be invited to judge the Rio Tinto Global Jewellery Design Awards, an accomplishment he modestly describes as being reflective not of himself, but of the status of Australian jewellery as a whole.
Wildlife Warriors support global conservation projects protecting some of our most threatened wildlife species and their natural habitats.
This remarkable solid gold gem set pen – designed, made and donated by Curtis Australia – has helped raise funds for the organisation, started by the late Steve Irwin and proudly carried on today.
Designing, prototyping and hand crafting everything in house from one purpose built location is unusual in the luxury brand arena. To create beautiful gem set solid gold watches, detailed story telling pens and fine diamond jewellery together allows for synergies to develop between different pieces and for Collections to form.
Another interesting strand to Glenn’s work is how much he references nature, in particular Australian landscapes and themes. The Colours of Australia pen with champagne and white Australian diamonds beautifully reflects his love of Australia.
A concern for nature has led to Glenn being instrumental in helping return environmental flows to Australia’s iconic Snowy River, and has inspired other work too.
Another philanthropic project is the Taronga Zoo Conservation Society Pen which highlights the endangered status of five of Australia’s best known animals. The tiny Corroboree frog that grips the very top of this solid yellow gold pen has black diamonds hand set to his back, perfectly mimicking his distinctive camouflage. Modelled by Curtis himself, this tactile masterpiece demonstrates another of his many talents – of which New York Times best selling author Bradley Trevor Greive AM was moved to say:
’The Curtis Taronga Centenary Pen is a rare object of singular beauty and noble purpose to be enjoyed and treasured‘
Today Curtis puts time honoured techniques to work across several precious disciplines. It’s fair to say that the jeweller’s influence shines right through the brand, illuminating watch and pen collections too.