Queen Of The Wild
Prestige Singapore|November 2021
Sleek, spectacular and indomitable, the Cartier Panthère still reigns supreme in the pantheon of animal icons of the jewellery world, says Yanni Tan.
Yanni Tan

Few creatures have ever achieved a truly exalted status in the collective consciousness of the universe of jewellery. Among them, one is the undeniable ruler of the bejewelled animal kingdom: the Cartier Panthère. Born of sheer imagination as a spotted motif, but evolving through the past century into an icon of profound complexity and emotions, the big cat is as richly symbolic as it is visually stunning.

First featured as onyx-on-diamond spots on a Cartier watch in 1914, the Panthère graduated from the abstract to a figurative representation three years later, in 1917, when it was depicted flanked by cypress trees on a nécessaire gifted by Louis Cartier to creative ingénue Jeanne Toussaint. Exuding glamour, confidence and strength – traits that resonated with Toussaint, who would eventually take the reins as Cartier’s creative director, the big cat would become her personal signature.

In 1948, after Toussaint fleshed out the creature in three dimensions, the Panthère has prowled the annals of the Maison ever since. While the feline has graced jewellery, watches, fragrances, accessories and countless unforgettable campaigns, exposure alone isn’t enough to capture the imagination of generations after generations of connoisseurs. Her success lies in Cartier’s savoir-faire and technical prowess in epitomising her beauty.

SHE IS CARTIER

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