Image Copyright Restricted

Jewelry design for Seaman Schepps of buddha brooch

American
1939–45
Drawing by Jordine Turboff (American (born in Russia)), Designed for Seaman Schepps (American, founded in 1904)


Object Place: New York City, United States

Dimensions

Length x width (aprox): 7 x 7 cm (2 3/4 x 2 3/4 in.)

Accession Number

2009.4679

Medium or Technique

Watercolor and pencil on paper

Not On View

Collections

Americas, Jewelry

Classifications

Drawings

Design for a brooch in the form of a green stone carved buddha or beauty figure bearing a lidded jug or censor; a gold halo surrounds the head of the figure and coral colored red and blue leaves emanate from the right side. There is a small white stone accenting the center of the chest of the figure just below the neck. The drawing has been cut out of the paper in a roughly circular shape.

This design was created by Jordine Turboff who came from Russia as a small child and grew up in Brooklyn, New York where she attended Pratt University. She worked for Seaman Schepps from 1939-1945, and her clients ranged from movie stars such as Marlene Dietrich, the Barrymores, Errol Flynn (who would often flirt with her), and Merle Oberon, to Eleanor Roosevelt and the Duke and Duchess of Windsor. She would often say that Mrs. Simpson had a taste for the richest stones and for the simplest designs. Whe she left Schepps in 1945, Mr. Schepps gave her these drawings (production and finished) as a wedding present. The lot represents only a fraction of her work. After leaving Schepps, Ms. Turboff concentrated on her painting, then using her married and middle name “Yari Levine” and is listed in many publications, including Who’s Who in American Women.

Provenance

1939-1945, designed by artist Jordine Turboff for Seaman Schepps in New York City; 1945, given by Schepps to Turboff on the occassion of her wedding; by descent to Turboff's son; September 15, 2009, sold by Skinner Auctioneers of Boston (lot 515) to the MFA (Accession date: October 21, 2009)

Credit Line

Museum purchase with funds donated by Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf