In 2019, Bulgari celebrates the 20th anniversary of the B.zero1 collection and the first event of the year to mark this milestone will be held tonight in Rome — with details being tightly kept under wraps.
“B.zero1 is a ring that has made history for Bulgari, creating a new market for sophisticated jewelry that is highly technological but that can be worn on a daily basis,” explained Jean-Christophe Babin, chief executive officer of Bulgari in an exclusive interview. “Even if you may not see it, there is a strong ergonomic and flexible architecture — an element of sophistication that is generally more associated with high jewelry, which takes into account the contact of jewelry on the skin.” Babin also emphasized the aesthetic disruption of the ring, which “celebrates art, yet it is geometric and very contemporary” and said the Colosseum is also a symbol of the Bulgari brand.
The Rome-based jewelry firm was inspired by the Colosseum with the launch in 1999 of this unique design. The company developed the Tubogas technique to reinterpret the amphitheater’s cylindrical shape with no welding. Bulgari has sold more than 2 million B.zero1 rings since then. “This is one of the designs that is more accepted globally, there is a universality connected to the inspiration of the Colosseum, a universal emblem of Rome,” mused Babin. Over the years, several variations were introduced, working with the likes of sculptor Anish Kapoor, for example. Generally retailing at below 5,000 euros, the B.zero1 rings are also “a point of entry into the brand,” Babin said.
To celebrate the anniversary, Bulgari relaunches the original model with a new ring in white gold with five bands, entirely mounted with a diamond pavé.
The ring is also available in yellow gold, white gold and for the first time in pink gold. All present the engraving “XX Anniversary” on the internal ferrule. The new B.zero1 bracelets have a particularly light fit with a thinner structure, which makes it easier to wear more than one at a time. Babin sees much potential in bracelets for this series.
In 2017, Bulgari collaborated with architect Zaha Hadid to launch the B.zero1 Design Legend, and for the anniversary, the brand presents new versions in the original pink gold with the addition of a heart of black and white ceramic. Each combination is available as a ring or as a pendant. A rigid pink gold rigid bracelet with black ceramic and a diamond pavé completes the collection.
Bella Hadid was tapped to the front the new B.zero1 campaign photographed by Mario Sorrenti, who last year lensed images for the new Fiorever line fronted by breakout Spanish actress Úrsula Corberó.
The jeweler will also introduce a men’s B.zero1 ring. “This is the first time. It’s surprising, but a number of B.zero1 rings are purchased by men, there is a unisex component,” said Babin, who regularly dons a B.zero1 ring.
The executive pointed to additional events to mark the anniversary during Milan Design Week in April and throughout the year.