With her incredible works featured in magazines such as Vogue, Elle and Vanity Fair, Dutch high-fashion jeweller and sculptor, Bibi Van Der Velden, is injecting the jewellery industry with her jaw-dropping creations. Drawing inspiration from the natural world, Bibi crafts her jewellery designs with unique sustainable materials, including a 60,000-year old mammoth tusk. Her collections incorporate the elements of nature, sea creatures, insects, and the galaxy, which make for bold, intricate jewellery pieces that draw attention from admirers around the globe, with public figures such as Rihanna and Kanye West joining her ever-growing list of admirers.

One of Bibi’s newly created masterpieces, the Memento Mori ring, will be displayed at this year’s Jewels!Hermitage exhibition in Amsterdam. From 14 September 2019 until 15 March 2020, the Hermitage Amsterdam will display 300 precious gems that were worn by Russian high society. The jewels, flown in from St Petersburg, give a fascinating view into the rich history of fashion and jewellery over the past two centuries that have influenced designers throughout the years. The stunning exhibitions gives a bewildering impression of the extraordinary wealth and power of the Russian tsars. 

Inspired by the perpetuating theme of life and death within the Russian Court (especially the Romanovs), Bibi crafted the Memento Mori Ring. She explained, “With all the assassinations going on and people creating a faster pace in the cycle of life, I saw there was a big opportunity there.” Radiating a lavish extravagance, the ring covers the entire hand and is designed as a parrot tulip in 18k yellow gold and sterling silver. “Everything during the reign of the Romanov was out of this world when it came to sizing. It had to be something that was big and over the top.” 

The flower’s petals are wilting, which again reinforces the symbolic reminder of Memento Mori and life’s inevitable demise. The stem of the tulip in 18k yellow gold is constructed to wrap around the fingers, creating a knuckle duster. Carefully nestled between the leaves of the ring is an egg crafted out of 60,000-year-old mammoth tusk sourced from Russia’s Siberian permafrost – another link to the country. From the egg emerges a man crawling out of its shell, which hints to the theme of rebirth – a contrast to the withering tulip and a wink to the cycle of life. 

The pedals are adorned with a variety of small critters: a rock crystal maggot, a gold spider, gold ants, seed pearl eggs, and a gold slug and caterpillar. “I focused on the insects that aren’t the typical insects that you see in jewellery, such as butterflies and bumblebees. They’re the insects that decay and lay eggs.” This, once again, supports the repeating theme. 

The Memento Mori ring and her visit to St Petersburg, Russia, sparked further inspiration in Bibi to craft a capsule collection that will launch on November 17th– the date of Catherine the Great’s death. The Memento Mori ring be put up for sale after the exhibition has ended with a price point that has not yet been disclosed.

Culture & Events
Share your story:
Contact your Insignia personal assistant for details
Related articles
Culture & Events
3 weeks ago
Exploring the Thrilling World of Sports: Must-Attend Events in Q4
As we enter the final quarter of the year, sports enthusiasts are in for a treat with a lineup of exhilarating events that promise to deliver unmatched excitement. From American football to tennis, mixed martial arts to rugby,...
4 weeks ago
Kaleidoscope of events in London
We unveil the sheer magic and endless possibilities of a good time this city holds. Let us navigate you to the memories you will never forget! Roar of Champions Whether you are a fan, an athlete, or just curious, there is no...
1 month ago
Luxury Auction Extravaganza: The Most Dazzling Acquisitions of 2023
Delve into a realm of opulence and grandeur as we showcase the remarkable acquisitions from the world’s most prestigious auctions in 2023. From exquisite art to rarefied timepieces, these coveted treasures epitomise luxury....
2 months ago
Rendezvous in the South of France
This meticulously curated guide invites you to embrace the costal allure, where every moment is an enchanting celebration of life! Restaurants “In France, cooking is a serious art form and a national sport”-Julia Child Le...
3 months ago
Summer Music Festivals
It’s looking like a busy summer for operas, concerts and music festivals across Europe. Here are some of the very best! Arena di Verona 16 June – 9 September, Italy Opera performances are given in Arena di Verona, an...
4 months ago
The Weeknd Live in Europe
Don’t miss The Weeknd’s highly-anticipated concerts in Europe in 2023! Experience the soulful voice and chart-topping hits of this legendary artist live in action with the electrifying performances of his latest album...
4 months ago
Taste of Napa: A Comprehensive Guide
Napa Valley, renowned for its exquisite wines and culinary delights, hosts an annual event that brings together the region’s finest offerings. On 15 July 2023, the latest edition of The Taste of Napa festival will once...
4 months ago
Unforgettable Sporting Events to Look Forward to in Q3 2023
Prepare for an exciting international lineup of major sporting events and tournaments in the third quarter of 2023. From explosive boxing rematches to prestigious tennis championships and thrilling rugby clashes, sports...
Insignia in the press
'Highly personalised and exclusive services to those who 
want to experience the best life has to offer.'
'Inside the $225,000 Oscars 2020 Gift Bag'
'Move over AmEx, here are by invitiation credit cards that cost $200,000'
'When AmEx Black Just Won't Do: A Gem-encrusted Card for .001%'
'The service is like having an invisible companion'
'British lifestyle management company takes the sting out of travel and daily life elevating it all to a lovely new life form'
'When you're exorbitantly rich, you can afford not to fret over things like your 15th wedding anniversary - at least if you're an Insignia member'