Elsa Peretti for Tiffany

An Iconic Elsa Peretti Scorpion Necklace in 18ct Yellow Gold

An iconic 18ct yellow gold scorpion necklace by Tiffany & Co, designed by Elsa Peretti in 1979, the torque style necklace is formed by the elongated front legs and pincers of the scorpion made in articulated segments for comfort and fit, the segmented body and tail form a long pendant drop, again composed of multiple articulated pieces which allow for flexibility and movement, the end of the tail is curved upwards and outwards so it sits proud of the body, putting emphasis on that dangerous ‘sting in the tail’. The necklace opens to one side of the torque via a concealed hook and eye clasp and the body and tail can be detached to allow the torque to be worn alone.

Further Details

Condition ReportVery fine
Setting18ct yellow gold signed Peretti Tiffany & Co. and marked 750
Weight description123 grams
DimensionsInner necklace circumference 40cm / 16", scorpion body and tail drop 15cm / 5.9"
PeriodDesigned in 1979, made circa 1980s

Directors Notes

Peretti was inspired to create this necklace by the scorpions she saw around her Spanish home in Catalonia. She said “While working in Sant Martí Vell, I came across a lot of scorpions. The animals are incredibly attractive, with fascinating mechanics. Strangely they are never around when I need to review something in my design. I have to confess that I had to sacrifice a few. I feel sorry.” The design is typical of her work, she was endlessly inspired by the natural world and obsessed with creating pared back, tactile pieces. Vogue magazine described her jewellery as “carved, pure—irresistibly touchable—it has been called jewellery as sculpture, sculpture as jewellery, and the most sensuous jewellery in the world.” It is testament to her creativity and artistic eye that she could take a creature like a scorpion and transform it into a desirable piece of wearable art.

Literature & Exhibitions

An image of the scorpion necklace is featured on p.97 of the Tiffany Flora and Fauna (2 vol.set) by John Loring.

A sterling silver version of this necklace forms part of the jewellery collection of the British Museum, it was donated by Tiffany & Co. in 2007 to celebrate their 30 year anniversary with Elsa Peretti.


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