Raised in the tradition of old jewellery masters in the heart of the Grand Bazaar, Sevan Bicakci is a true artisan who loves to explore and push the limits of his own imagination. All of his rings are unmistakably unique objets d’art, designed with meticulous craftsmanship and rare materials. As a three-time winner of the prestigious Town&Country Award, Bicakci is one of the brightest and youngest designers to be pursued by jewellery collectors worldwide.
Your rings seem to show not only beautiful imagery, but also tell great stories. Could you tell us your favourite story?
Though I prefer not to discriminate between my designs, I can say I’m really fond of our latest pieces made with South Sea pearls and inspired by Jules Verne’s Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea. In the book, Captain Nemo feels pity for a poor Indian pearl diver, so he gives him these beautiful and rare pearls as a present. The distinctive pearls we used in our latest work were presented to me by chance. They previously belonged to a private collection, only available to a handful of select designers around the world. Having access to these huge pearls makes me feel just as lucky as that pearl diver in the book. I envisioned a 20,000 league journey under the sea as I worked with them. In our rings, I see these marine creatures with supernatural qualities and a dramatic presence, sworn to protect their bearers with their special charms.
You always emphasize the effect Istanbul has on your designs. What does your Istanbul look like?
My studio is in Nuruosmaniye, right in the middle of the Old City. “Nur-Ä± Osmaniyye” in old Ottoman means “light of Osman” – I am lucky to have a lot of this light of the Ottoman coming in through my studio’s windows. For me, Istanbul is the most attractive and exciting place on earth despite all the changes it is going through. I was raised hearing the stories of mysterious underground tunnels which connect Samatya’s churches. I was always curious about the guards who were on constant watch at the Byzantine walls, scanning the horizon for ships approaching the city. Istanbul has always been a land of dreams. I am so happy to know that I don’t have to go far to be inspired.
What is your production team like? What kind of materials do you use to make your designs?
We are a colourful bunch. We have artists who work in sculpture, painting, miniatures, calligraphy, micro-mosaics as well as craftsmen who are masters in different aspects of jewellery making. All of the masters and artists in my workshop are freelance and they are encouraged to explore new dimensions in their own fields. Every idea gets a chance to be tested and tried. Thus, the range of materials used vary greatly: we composed our Temple of Hope design – which won the Couture Design award in 2008 in the Coloured Gemstone Design category – with 17 different materials including bone and porcelain.
Molla Fenari Mah. Gazi Sinanpasa Sk. No: 16 CaÄŸaloÄŸlu
Tel. +90 212 5204 516
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Visnezade Mah. Sair Nedim Cad. No:3 (1A) Akaretler
Tel. +90 212 2369 199