The Black Hand
Circa 1915. Lupo the Wolf watches the man dip his hand into the heavy
ink. He presses it at the bottom of the page. The Mano Nera–the
Black Hand–continues it’s practices of extortion. The letter is going
prominent member of the community. Your money…or your children’s
lives. And then directions. And then the imprint. And nothing more.
Nothing more is needed. The Black Hand is notorious in New York.
Terror reigns. The recipient takes one look and heads to the bank to
empty his account. He is thankful he will live to see tomorrow.
- An artist is born. He is a stylist of phenominal power. Some
consider him a visionary. He spends thirty years constructing a style
so remarkable that he opens new worlds. His perfumes are considered
extraordinary. His art epitomizes femininity. At twenty one years of
age he collaborates with Paris Vogue on its prestigious Christmas
issue. His name is Serge Lutens.
While the term Black Hand started in the 19th century by the Spanish
and the Serbians…it was the American contingency of that name that
was most famous. It was a powerful extortion racket that preyed on
hapless immigrants who were able to pay away their life savings in
order to prevent a death in the family. It was not part of any major
crime factions. It was composed of small groups of petty crimminals
who discovered an effective method of culling funds.
So beautiful were Serge Lutens photographs of jewelry that Christian
Dior named him artistic director of it’s makeup development project.
He was intrumental in turning makeup into a multi-million dollar
activity for the fashion names of the world. He creates…at one point
in his life…a magnificent “Black Hand”.
One name juxtaposes the ugly with the beautiful. The Black Hand…a
segment of criminals in New York represented by Italian and Jewish
factions which evoked terror in the city and was only disseminated
when a more lucrative method of money-making came along…namely…
Prohibition. The Black Hand…a charcoal glove covering slender
female fingers and showing a D colored…flawless Pear Shaped
diamond…and nothing more. It is a stark vision created by a man
whose work has been represented by the Guggenheim Museum in New York
and the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam.
Serge Lutens’ Black Hand with its flawless diamond is a must see. It
is striking. It is stripped to bare essentials. A glove…a diamond
…and nothing more. One descriptive name–the Black Hand–separates
the world of beauty and ugliness with a chasm so wide as to be
unimaginable and unbreachable.
For those of you who are new to this thing called Tidbits…may I
direct you to my home page at www.tyler-adam.com where you will
scroll down the table menu till you get to the box that says
Tidbits…and inside the box where it says Tidbit Graphics…click on
the link that says: Black Hand…where you will see a graphic of our
And there ya have it. That’s it for this week folks. Catch you all next
week. Benjamin Mark
TYLER-ADAM CORP.–Jewelry Manufacturers
E-Mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org