Gabriela Artigas's first foray into the jewellery world was a simple beaded necklace she made for her mother. While they were sitting in a restaurant in Los Angeles, it unexpectedly caught the attention of a passerby, who ended by buying it. Driven by this boost of confidence, the Mexican-born designer founded her eponymous brand in 2003. In 2008, finding herself at the crossroads between elevating the label to a full-time life commitment or scaling it down to a hobby, Gabriela took on board her older sister Teresita to look after sales and other administrative tasks. "Since the beginning, it was a good organic partnership," says Teresita. "We know what our strengths are and, as sisters, we know what buttons to push to make [ourselves] do better." Close since childhood - "we lived in the same bedroom for ever," jokes Teresita - they have grown even closer working side by side.
Most of Gabriela Artigas's pieces stem from the signature Infinite Tusk, a sleek, elongated shape that the designer has transformed in pull-through earrings, open-circle rings and sharp pendants. Each new collection includes a reinterpretation of this simple design, which Artigas has brightened up with coloured pavé stones, rotated to fit along the lobe and inflated to assume a slightly rounded shape. Alongside her ever-evolving tusks, the designer creates modern pieces which undoubtedly take their cues from architecture - their grandfather Francisco Artigas was a renowned Modernist architect - and from the sisters' enthusiasm to explore different cultures, which was encouraged by their mother from a very young age.
- Annachiara Biondi
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