Antonio Bernardo was born in 1947, in Rio de Janeiro. While still a child, he came into contact with the goldsmith trade through his father, Rudolf Herrman, whose shop specialized in jewelry and watch making items. In 1968 he went to Lausanne, Switzerland, to study at CFH (Centre International de Formation de L’Industrie Horlogère Suisse), where he was an intern at Ebauches and Leschot, watch making companies.
Around this time, Antonio was already studying engineering in Rio de Janeiro, but, further along, faced with a creative impulse, he decided to forgo the degree, dedicating his efforts in researching goldsmith techniques and self-teaching jewelry making. For almost a decade he worked in his home workshop, a studio equipped with traditional tools, many of them inherited from his father, as well as with sophisticated industrial devices. Soon afterwards, he opened his first shop, in 1981, at Shopping da Gávea, Rio de Janeiro.
This marked the transition into an entrepreneurial process, reaching a peak when he opened his workshop in Jardim Botânico. However, the innovative and investigative motivation, which defines his design, held strong. This led Antonio Bernardo – among other achievements – to the creation of a special diamond cut, called Wish Star. In the year 2000, he launched in the same address in Ipanema his flagship store and the Antonio Bernardo Gallery, where relevant modern and contemporary art exhibitions are held.
Next, the brand went through international expansion, when the designer made his first appearance at BaselWorld, in 2003, and with the prize he won at the German industrial design award IF Design, in 2004, with Ciclos (Cycles) and Expand rings.
Amongst other important achievements in his career, in 2007, the book “Antonio Bernardo” was published by Vianna & Mosley publishing, in Rio de Janeiro.