Jules-John Dunand was born in Lancy, Switzerland in May of 1877. Jules changed his name to Jean to have a more french name and became a French citizen in 1922. He began studying sculpture at the Geneva School of Industrial Arts at just fourteen years old. In 1897 he moved to Paris and began work starting as a sculptor then worked as copper craftsman. He began to expand what he worked in and experimented with a wide range of materials, including steel, copper, pewter and silver. He then worked with gold or mother-of-pearl and enamels and patinas. His works started to include vases, plates, boxes, and moved into jewelry. By 1913 he began working with Seizo Sugawara who came from Japan and worked in lacquers. With this Jean began to drift away from jewelry and look for design work in the decorative space where his name flourished.