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3 posts from December 2017

LA Museum Going Green with Diamonds This Winter

0.58 carat Fancy Vivid Green diamondLos Angeles--The Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County is going green in a big way.

On Saturday, the museum will open a new exhibition called “Green Diamonds: Natural Radiance,” adding eight cases of the green gems to its Gem and Mineral Hall.

The loose and set diamonds come as part of the Gamma Collection, which is on loan from Optimum Diamonds LLC and was assembled over a period of about 15 years. Gamma is comprised of more than 60 of the rarest and most prestigious natural colored diamonds in the world, according to the museum.  The 0.58 carat fancy vivid green diamond shown to the right is an example of the beauty to be seen.

The collection showcases a variety of shapes, cuts and shades of the color spectrum.

The highlight of the exhibition is “The Mantis,” the largest vivid yellowish-green diamond ever graded by the Gemological Institute of America at 4.17 carats, as well as “The Shangri-La,” a large vivid green diamond weighing 3.88 carats. Both are mounted in rings.

There also is “The Light of Erasmus,” an extremely rare 1.63-carat vivid greenish-blue diamond.

In addition to seeing the diamonds, the exhibition also will give museum visitors the opportunity to learn about the formation of diamonds and scientific origins of the green color, including the gamma radiation that inspired the name of the collection.

3.08 carat Fancy Dark Gray-Greenish diamondThe exhibition also will explore the unsolved mysteries behind “Chameleon” diamonds, which temporarily change color when exposed to light or heat. “Natural Radiance” will feature three of these stones, including a 3.08-carat dark gray greenish-yellow diamond.

The company will also exhibit two very rare diamonds Optimum Diamonds won at the 2017 Argyle Pink Diamonds Tender: the Argyle Everglow and the Argyle Liberté.

The collection will be on view at the museum from Dec. 9 through April 1, 2018.

Coinciding with the launch of the exhibition, the Los Angeles GIA Alumni Association is hosting its second annual “Night Among Gems” event at the museum on Wednesday, Dec. 13 from 6 to 9 p.m.

Attendees will get to see the stones as well as mingle with Associate Curator of Mineral Sciences Aaron Celestian.

Tickets can be purchased online.

A 1.01-carat vivid yellowish-green diamond 1.01 carat Vivid Yellowish Green diamond

A 1.38-carat fancy vivid bluish-green diamond 1.38 carat Fancy Vivid Bluish Green diamond

 

A 0.54-carat fancy intense green-blue diamond 0.54 carat Fancy Intense Green-Blue diamond

Learn more about green diamonds from the GIA...

via www.nationaljeweler.com


One of World's Largest Diamonds Fetches $6.5M to Aid Sierra Leone

709 carat rough diamondOne of the world's largest diamonds was sold for $6.5 million by Sierra Leone on Monday to fund local development projects, dealing a blow to smugglers in the West African nation.

The egg-sized, 709-carat diamond found by a Christian pastor was bought at auction in New York by Laurence Graff, a British billionaire and jeweler, according to the Rapaport Group, an international diamond trading network that handled the sale.

Of the proceeds of the stone dubbed the "Peace Diamond," the government will get 59 percent or about $3.9 million in tax revenue to fund clean water, electricity, schools, health centers and roads, said Martin Rapaport of the Rapaport Group.

Peace-diamond-sierra-leone"As a government, particularly in Africa, it has always been the narration of corruption, and the mineral wealth is not benefiting the people," said Abdulai Bayraytay, a spokesman for Sierra Leone President Ernest Bai Koroma, at a news conference.

The auction marked the first time a diamond found in Sierra Leone was put up for public sale, and state officials said they hope it will be a step toward ending the illicit diamond trade.

Diamonds fueled civil war in Sierra Leone in the 1990s, when rebels forced civilians to mine the stones and bought weapons with the proceeds, leading to the term 'blood diamonds.'

The United Nations lifted a ban on diamond exports from Sierra Leone in 2003, but the multi-million dollar sector is still plagued by smuggling.

The balance of the proceeds will go to a local group overseeing the development projects, the pastor and other miners who found the gem and gave it to the government, Rapaport said.

"It will encourage all the diggers back home," Chief Paul Ngaba Saquee, head of Sierra Leone's eastern Kono district, where the diamond was found in March, told the news conference.

"Instead of being ripped off in some dark corners when they find their diamonds, that they will bring it and put it on the table in front of the government," he said in New York. "Maybe this is going to be the beginning of a new day in Sierra Leone."

A first effort to sell the diamond failed in May when Sierra Leone rejected the highest bid of $7.8 million.

This time, the stone was shown to some 70 potential buyers and seven bids were submitted, according to Rapaport.

So why didn't the peace diamond go for a higher price?

"The top end of the diamond market is not at its height," Kormind told CNNMoney by email, and the gem may not be as attractive as its sheer size suggests.

"The peace diamond is known to be a very complicated stone," he said. "Larger rough diamonds don't necessarily translate into large diamonds when they are cut and polished. It's all a question of the largest cleanest stone that can be gleaned from the rough. If you can't yield a single large diamond of very high quality, and instead have to make several stones out of the large stone, that decreases the value enormously."

 

via Voice of America


Diamonds.net - Blue Diamond Sells for $15M at Sotheby’s New York

Sothebys blue diamond saleSotheby’s sold $54 million worth of jewelry at its New York auction on Tuesday as several pieces containing rare blue diamonds and gemstones yielded higher-than-expected prices. 

An anonymous buyer spent $15.1 million, or $2.7 million per carat, on an emerald-cut, 5.69-carat, fancy vivid blue, VVS1-clarity diamond ring, beating its upper estimate of $15 million, the auctioneer said. Meanwhile, a pear-shaped, 2.05-carat, fancy intense blue, internally flawless diamond ring fetched $2.7 million, or $1.3 million per carat, in a sale to a member of the trade — well above its high estimate of $1.5 million. 

Sapphire jewelry also attracted strong prices. A Van Cleef & Arpels bracelet containing 193.73 carats of the blue stones went to a private collector for $3.1 million, having drawn an estimate of up to $1.5 million. A sapphire-and-diamond necklace-bracelet combination by Harry Winston — with seven emerald-cut sapphires weighing a combined 123.13 carats — fetched $1.9 million, beating the expected price of up to $1.5 million. 

“The market continues to show its strength in colored stones, with today’s results driven by intense competition for important colored diamonds, sapphires and emeralds in particular,” Sotheby’s jewelry-division chair Gary Schuler said.

A 110.92-carat, L-color, VS1-clarity diamond — the largest round diamond in auction history — appeared on Sotheby’s list of unsold lots. The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment outside of New York working hours.
via www.diamonds.net