Antonio Bernardo

Antonio Bernardo was born in Rio de Janeiro in 1947. His contact with the world of goldsmiths started when he was still a child, through his father, Rudolf Herrmann, whose shop sold tools and components for manufacturing jewelry and watches. In 1968 he went to Lausanne, Switzerland, to study at the CFH (Centre International de Formation de l'industrie Horlogère Suisse), an international center for research and further education in the watch industry. At the same time, he worked as an intern at institutes and companies in the watch making industry.

When he came back from Europe, in the early 70's, he went to college at PUC University, in Rio de Janeiro, to study engineering. However, compelled by the force of his creative impulse, he decided to drop out of college to dedicate his time to research goldsmith techniques and jewelry design. For almost a decade he worked at his home workshop dedicating himself to the manufacture of jewelry. He attended workshops, explored the potentialities of metals, the operation of the tools he had known since childhood, and learned how to effectively make jewelry.

By this time, Antonio had already compiled a considerable list of customers through word of mouth, and for this reason, in 1981, he opened his first store at Shopping da Gávea, Rio de Janeiro, launching the company that bears his name. This was a milestone in the process of transition from self-taught designer, a mix of artist and technician, to entrepreneur, and would culminate in the opening of the workshop in Jardim Botânico.

At this third phase of his career, Antonio established himself as one of the pioneers in Brazil, creating a trademark of jewel design bearing his name, and thus launching his authorship all over the country.

The origin

Antonio Bernardo began designing jewelry in the early 70's. His first creation was a silver ring composed of two independent bands. This ring pinpoints the beginning of the designer's successful career.

This was followed by the creation of pieces in gold, the metal that he explores in all its expressive potential, as well as the creation of jewelry pieces distinguished by the attention given to the complexity and beauty of natural gemstones.

It was the creation of the Mosca (Fly) pin that set the designer on the path to creative freedom when, in a moment of abstraction, in which he randomly observed the stillness and the delicate traits of the insect, he began to casually recreate it in gold. The piece not only became one of the emblematic jewels of his career, but it also sanctioned the use of humor, poetry, chance, celebration, seduction, introspection and abstraction, among many other experiences vital to his design. This paved the way for experimentation and for the plastic investigation of universal, empirical and timeless themes.

Another important milestone in his career was the creation of the Wish bracelet, an example of interactive jewelry, where the authorship of the piece is the sum of the idea of the author with the creative collaboration of the user. On a leather cord with gold tips, customers can place as many tags as they want. The tags are engraved with universal wishes (love, peace, fun, santé etc.)

The drive for innovation that characterizes Antonio’s design led to the creation of a special type of diamond cut, named the Wish Star, and of different types of quartz cuts, named Shine, Celebration and Prism.

Antonio Bernardo’s workshop

The opening of the Workshop in 1983 led to the development of the design management process. Distinguished by the thoroughness with which all the departments of the company operate, from the administrative to the commercial areas, this management skill was first outlined in the talent Antonio displayed as an entrepreneurial designer.

In the Workshop, the Creative, Administrative, Marketing, Customer Service and Quality Control sectors work alongside the designer’s strategic development and rapid prototyping departments. Artistic meticulousness combine with industrial excellence throughout the creation process, with the active collaboration of all teams.

The Creative, Modeling and Gemology sectors work closely with Antonio Bernardo’s inspirations, establishing a shared and collaborative dynamic, focused on experimentation and on conceptual questioning, both fundamental to the design. Normally, many pieces are developed simultaneously, and are subjected to a strict screening and investigation process before arriving at the stores.

Awards and Partnerships Throughout his career, Antonio Bernardo has won many important awards, both national and international. The main ones are:

National awards

Selo Rio com Design
1997
Award for
Design Company

Brasil faz Design
2004
Sinuoso Ring
Expand Ring

IDEA Brasil
2008
Oxigênio Ring
Impulso Earring
Íntimo Ring

Faz Diferença (O Globo)
2011
Awarded to people who stood out the most on the pages of the newspaper for their achievements in their areas of activity.

International awards

IF Product Design Award
(Hanover, Alemanha)
2004
Ciclos Ring
Expand Ring

2005
Fold Ring

2006
Balanço Ring
Puzzle Ring

2007
Impulso Earring

2008
Oxigênio Ring

2009
Satélite Necklace

2011
Together Bracelet

Red Dot Design
(Esse, Alemanha)
2004
Expand Ring

2010
Puzzle Curvo Ring

Partnerships

To expand his ideas and creations, Antonio developed partnerships with different brands, from different areas.

Lumini
2011
Luminária 360 (a pendant light fixture)

Mendes-Hirth
2012
Ondas (Waves) cane and Farol (Lighthouse) cane.
Creative contribution to the Erlanger walking cane
Made of solid wood and structured by fitting, the aerodynamic aspect of the cane designed by Mendes-Hirth inspired Antonio to create his two variants of the piece.

Sergio Rodrigues Institute
2014
Banco Mocho charm, created in honor of the architect and furniture designer Sergio Rodrigues.

Rio Open de Tênis
2014
Designed the trophy for the Rio Open tennis tournament, an event that takes place in Rio de Janeiro.

Mozak
2017
Artistic concept for a residential development project in Leblon, Rio de Janeiro.

Solarium Revestimentos
2017
Created a line of wall coverings and panels named Bossa
The combination of geometric shapes, with many different possibilities of composition, creates an optical effect, in allusion to the rhythm of the music.

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