Jewelry Designer Elsa Peretti Has Died


Finding fame dizzying, Peretti retreated to Spain, to the village of Sant Martí Vell where she had bought a compound in 1968, and started to revive it, one building at a time. Peretti led an ascetic, unhurried, and happy existence in Catalonia (perhaps somewhat akin to that of Georgia O’Keeffe in Taos, New Mexico), that she found conducive to creation. “Of course, I’m slow,” she told Vogue. “I have to crystallize a form, find the essence. It’s a continual training to be essential in your work, and then you have to be essential in your life, too.”

In light of the fact that Peretti was known for her largesse and for quietly supporting her friends, it seems fitting that one of her best known pieces is an open heart.

Elsa Peretti, 1974.

Photographed by Duane Michals, Vogue, December 1974

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