Purse's exhibition album
Chic and practical, the art of the purse - 16 x 21,5 cm - 80 pages

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Weight 372 g
Paperback, opening from aboveEmbossed cardboard cover with hot gold markings80 pages, including 48 pages of illustrationsThe 11 Conti – Monnaie de Paris, as a creator of coins, naturally takes interest in ‘treasure troves’ which have fulfilled the...
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Purse's exhibition album Chic and practical, the art of the purse 16 x 21,5 cm - 80 pages


    • Paperback, opening from above
    • Embossed cardboard cover with hot gold markings
    • 80 pages, including 48 pages of illustrations

    The 11 Conti – Monnaie de Paris, as a creator of coins, naturally takes interest in ‘treasure troves’ which have fulfilled the role of containing money and sometimes various other objects throughout the ages. Features of everyday life and indicators of social status, purses, coin purses invite discussion surrounding societal life over the centuries, and more specifically the 19th century, as well as providing an illustration of ‘Parisian chic’. 

    Surprisingly, never in France has an entire exhibition been dedicated to purses. The aesthetic quality of these objects necessitates an approach which looks beyond their practicality. Henri Joannis-Deberne’s collection has never before been exhibited. Covering the period 1830 to 1930, it will be shown for the first time alongside purses on loan from French museums and from leather goods and jewellery houses. These objects date from the 20th century, a period when the purse, much like the handbag, became a fashion accessory of major contemporary brands. 

    The over 200 different pieces which will be exhibited are made of various materials (tortoise shell, wood, ivory, mother-of-pearl, fabric, metal, shells, leather, etc.) and come from many different parts of the world (FRANCE, Austria, England, Italy, Russia, etc.)

    Many associated jobs and trades - fine cabinet makers, goldsmiths, jewellers - have gone through training to create this type of object. Finally, coins from the Monnaie de Paris collection will be presented alongside these purses.

    Our craftman


      Our creations are enamelled using a rare technique known as grand feu enamelling. Another workshop sends the enameller a decoration, piece of jewellery or struck medal with hollow spaces on its surface. Using a dip pen, needle or brush, the enameller fills these hollows with enamel, which they have prepared themselves. The fixing of the variously coloured enamel powders is controlled by short, successive firings at 900 degrees.


      The medal minter transforms a blank into a medal, alternating between striking to bring out the relief and annealing to return the metal to a more malleable state. The blank is struck as many times as necessary, depending on the diameter, depth and detail of the engraving. Finally, surface treatments are applied to enhance the finished piece


      Trained at the best schools, they have the years of experience behind them necessary to master all aspects of the craft. Using industrial oil-based modelling clay and working from a design executed freehand or with CAD software, they skilfully fashion a low relief model in order to enhance the engraving and the way it catches the light. They work alternately with concave and convex plaster moulds until satisfied they have achieved the best 3D rendering of the design.


      The first minters began to ply their trade in France when striking with a hammer appeared in the 4th century BC. Nowdays, minsters use press instead of a hammer. Their knowledge of dies, engraving and metals, and their expertise - passed seamlessly down from one generation to the next for centuries - guarantees the excellence of their work.