Charles Boutet de Monvel was born in Paris in 1855. He attended the Ecole des Beaux Arts from 1874 and studied medal engraving under François Hubert Ponscarme, the sculptor and medallist. He started making jewellery from 1898. His work regularly exhibited at the Paris Salons. He favored unusual symbolic and organic motifs, including dragonflies, pea pods, spiders, snakes, lizards, shells and seahorses, combined with an imaginative use of materials, which won critical acclaim after 1900. He exhibited at the first Studio International Exhibition in London in 1901 and received a gold medal at the International Exhibition in Milan in 1906. He was one of several young designers who worked in an avant-garde style less opulent and glamorous than early Art Nouveau.
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