Klaus Stenzhorn was born in the small town of Boppard, located on the banks of the Rhine. As a child, his father taught him to approach any kind of work he was involved in with love, passion and enthusiasm. Klaus himself, sitting on the banks of the Rhine, dreamt that he would become of the lucky ones sailing in boats along the river to the open sea. At the age of 18 his dream came true when he got a job on a cruise liner.
Having left his home town, he visited over 120 countries around the world, tirelessly admiring the beauty and variety of local landscapes. Red African sunsets, the green expanses of the Amazon rainforest, the endless blue of the depths of the sea – his eyes were always drawn to the world’s brightest colours. Fascinated by animals, he simply fell in love with the wild beings that inhabit the earth especially the elegant, wild representatives of the feline world.
It was on a hot summer day in 1976 in Brazil that Klaus was invited to visit an emerald mine and saw the thing that served as the beginning of the greatest journey of his life. The unbridled power of the colour of the precious stones resembled the endless sea of green of the Amazon rainforest. Charmed by these treasures, he began to study and collect various precious stones during his travels. For Klaus they were associated with his main source of inspiration – nature. From the deep blue sapphires of Sri Lanka to the fiery red rubies of Myanmar – the young man was sure that nothing could better convey the memory and value of local landscapes. And so it was that in the winter of 1979 the Stenzhorn jewellery house came into being. It became defined by its highly artistic pieces, innovative jewellery techniques and the renowned German precision in execution.
Working with his designers, Klaus Stenzhorn provides the main ideological inspiration for the collections. This has led to various aspects of his life being traceable in each collection from colours to shapes. The beginnings of a new collection come into being spontaneously with each line being exalted by an original technique. Most of the collections are based on different aspects of Mother Nature – for example, beautiful flowers, animals or insects. “I think in colours. Sometimes, when I start a new collection I first think of a colour palette, not a certain subject,” says Klaus.
The flagship theme of Stenzhorn is, of course, flora and fauna in all its magnificence and diversity. Nature will always play a key part in the pieces of the German jewellery company and even its new logo, an orchid, is directly connected to it. This elegant flower is a symbol of the refined beauty and gentility that defines Stenzhorn’s jewellery. “The art of jewellery making is my way of revealing the secrets of the breath-taking beauty of nature”, says Klaus Stenzhorn. Leopards, tigers, lions, “inhabit” the Wild Life collections, the subjects of which are made with exquisite finesse and invention.
Illusion is a collection of jewellery that makes use of the intriguing technique of trompe-l’oeil optical illusion. The butterflies and dragonflies of the collection appear to change colour depending on the angle from which they are viewed. Thanks to this incredibly intriguing effect, it is hard to take your eyes off the jewellery. As you look, you will see how the precious stones sparkle, revealing nearly all the colours of the rainbow. Aided by an abundance of gemstones Klaus wanted to convey the rich palette of colours that he “absorbed” during his travels.
Stenzhorn is also well-known for its original, invisible stone-setting technique, which the house was one of the first to master in diamonds. Having perfected the art of setting, Stenzhorn has now launched a new high jewellery collection, The Noble Ones, dedicated to an ancient Chinese story of the four seasons, depicted as flowers. The brand also has a fine jewellery collection, Candy, that illustrates the versatility of invisible setting in “everyday” pieces.
Despite the fact that I don’t really want to end this story, I’m sure that you have already formed a general impression of the brand and can now tell that Klaus’ signature is always present in each of Stenzhorn’s pieces.