Guido Taroni
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: Guido Taroni attends Giampiero Bodino's 'Beauty Is My Favourite Colour' cocktails and dinner evening at Spencer House on October 11, 2017 in London, England. 2:1 (Photo by Darren Gerrish/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Guido Taroni
Giampiero Bodino
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: Giampiero Bodino attends Giampiero Bodino's 'Beauty Is My Favourite Colour' cocktails and dinner evening at Spencer House on October 11, 2017 in London, England. 2:1 (Photo by Darren Gerrish/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Giampiero Bodino

By Rachael Taylor

In the grand surrounds of Spencer House, London’s finest surviving 18th century town house, Giampiero Bodino leads the way through a maze of richly hued photographs. Each portrait is a masterpiece, taken not for the Italian jeweller’s latest campaign or a magazine shoot, but purely for the pleasure of its creation.

The exhibition, Beauty Is My Favourite Colour, was a team effort. Bodino, who is creative director of luxury group Richemont (owner of brands including Van Cleef & Arpels and Cartier) and master of his own self-titled luxury jewellery maison, worked for more than a year on the project with his photographer friend Guido Taroni.

Taroni, whose family lineage includes the director Luchino Visconti and fashion photographer Giovanni Gastel, is well connected in Italian society, as is Bodino, and the subjects of the 15 portraits all friends of the pair (though many are also well-known public figures).

In each image, you’ll spot Giampiero Bodino jewellery, but the connection between the image and the jewel goes much deeper than simply matching it to a dress. Look closely, and you’ll see that the settings of the shoots mimic elements of the jewels, and as such, the shooting schedule took Taroni all over Italy.

Giampiero Bodino
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: A general view at Giampiero Bodino's 'Beauty Is My Favourite Colour' cocktails and dinner evening at Spencer House on October 11, 2017 in London, England. 2:1 (Photo by Darren Gerrish/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11:  A general view at Giampiero Bodino's 'Beauty Is My Favourite Colour' cocktails and dinner evening at Spencer House on October 11, 2017 in London, England.
2:1  (Photo by Darren Gerrish/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: A general view at Giampiero Bodino's 'Beauty Is My Favourite Colour' cocktails and dinner evening at Spencer House on October 11, 2017 in London, England. 2:1 (Photo by Darren Gerrish/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: A general view at Giampiero Bodino's 'Beauty Is My Favourite Colour' cocktails and dinner evening at Spencer House on October 11, 2017 in London, England. 2:1 (Photo by Darren Gerrish/Getty Images)

“It wasn’t easy, because it was spread across the country, but what helped is that we had a very clear idea in our minds,” says the charismatic Bodino, who prefers not to be constricted to such a limiting label as that of a jeweller, just as he believes a beautiful jewellery photoshoot should not be limited to the sole purpose of trying to make a sale. “I’ve taken the most difficult way, but that is that way that belongs to Giampiero.”

The project is, he says, an homage to Italian beauty. Not the architecture or classical art that we are used to associating with Italy, but a modern depiction of Italy filled with just the sort of beautiful people and unexpected places he and Taroni have captured.

After a glamorous debut in London, attended by the subjects of the portraits as well as British guests including Alice Naylor-Leyland, Bea Fresson and Sabine Getty, Beauty Is My Favourite Colour will appear in Milan at the end of November before travelling to New York in spring. The images have also been used to create a substantial coffee-table book that has all the attention to detail you would expect from the creative duo that is Bodino and Taroni.

 

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11:  Kea Longoni attends Giampiero Bodino's 'Beauty Is My Favourite Colour' cocktails and dinner evening at Spencer House on October 11, 2017 in London, England.
2:1  (Photo by Darren Gerrish/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Kea Longoni
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: Kea Longoni attends Giampiero Bodino's 'Beauty Is My Favourite Colour' cocktails and dinner evening at Spencer House on October 11, 2017 in London, England. 2:1 (Photo by Darren Gerrish/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Kea Longoni
Malaika Firth
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: Malaika Firth attends Giampiero Bodino's 'Beauty Is My Favourite Colour' cocktails and dinner evening at Spencer House on October 11, 2017 in London, England. 2:1 (Photo by Darren Gerrish/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Malaika Firth
Sabrina Querci
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: Sabrina Querci attends Giampiero Bodino's 'Beauty Is My Favourite Colour' cocktails and dinner evening at Spencer House on October 11, 2017 in London, England. 2:1 (Photo by Darren Gerrish/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Sabrina Querci
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11:  Saimi Hoyer attends Giampiero Bodino's 'Beauty Is My Favourite Colour' cocktails and dinner evening at Spencer House on October 11, 2017 in London, England.
2:1  (Photo by Darren Gerrish/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Saimi Hoyer
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: Saimi Hoyer attends Giampiero Bodino's 'Beauty Is My Favourite Colour' cocktails and dinner evening at Spencer House on October 11, 2017 in London, England. 2:1 (Photo by Darren Gerrish/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Saimi Hoyer
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11:  Mimma Viglezio attends Giampiero Bodino's 'Beauty Is My Favourite Colour' cocktails and dinner evening at Spencer House on October 11, 2017 in London, England.
2:1  (Photo by Darren Gerrish/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Mimma Viglezio
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: Mimma Viglezio attends Giampiero Bodino's 'Beauty Is My Favourite Colour' cocktails and dinner evening at Spencer House on October 11, 2017 in London, England. 2:1 (Photo by Darren Gerrish/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Mimma Viglezio
Martina Mondadori
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: Martina Mondadori attends Giampiero Bodino's 'Beauty Is My Favourite Colour' cocktails and dinner evening at Spencer House on October 11, 2017 in London, England. 2:1 (Photo by Darren Gerrish/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Martina Mondadori