Take some of the world’s greatest jewelry designers. Ask them to create a piece based on the same theme. No rules, no restrictions, no boundaries.
That’s what the American Jewelry Design Council has been doing since 1996. Each year the Council picks a theme – pyramid, tear, wave, puzzle – and challenges its invite-only members to create a piece based on it.
Nearly 200 works of jewelry and objet d’art from this annual event are being exhibited at GIA’s world headquarters in Carlsbad, California through 2016. Here’s a sneak peek of what you’ll see.
“A rainy day in Paris” was John Iversen’s poetic interpretation of the theme of “water.” Iversen’s blackened bronze earrings were inspired by raindrops dripping off umbrellas.
The fluid quality of water is frozen in Michael Good’s 18K gold bracelet. His piece is a fleeting instant forever captured in time.
Starfish clinging to pylons is the playful imagery Gregory Morin used to express the water theme. Entitled “Under the Sea,” Morin’s nautical inspiration is made of black jade, opals, diamonds, agate and gold earrings. Image courtesy of AJDC. Photo Robert Weldon/GIA.
Whitney Boin’s brooch is a provocative interpretation of the theme of flight. The choice of paper and plexiglass as materials also challenges the notion that jewelry must be made of precious metals and gemstones.
A flock of birds take to the wing in Jaclyn Davidson’s 18K gold and sterling silver necklace. Diamonds and weather milled steel are their metallic plumage.
An X-Gamer zip-lining? An astronaut in a rocket? An aviator in a plane? You decide the meaning of Pascal Lacroix’s “Mono Lake,” which features diamonds, 14K yellow and white gold.
Mark Schneider took the word pyramid, and made a ring of diamonds and 18K gold. Schneider cleverly titled the piece “Form & Function”: the pyramid is the form; the ring is its function.
Towering ruins of ancient temples and statues loom over the Egyptian city of Luxor. Christo Kiffer’s “Luxor” ring, made of diamonds and 18K gold ring by designer, pays homage to the site.
Pyramids are shrouded in mystery and intrigue. Kent Raible played with these associations in “Oracle” (oracles were believed to be able to see into the future) – a moonstone, pink sapphires and 18K gold pendant.
Tension becomes a lighthearted creation in the hands of Alan Revere. Cultured pearls are the head of the screw; a ruby is the tip of Revere’s “Snug” ring.
A ring studded with golden nails: Paul Klecka’s 18K piece radiates tension. Its forbidding appearance will cause a twinge of anxiety in the wearer.
Here is a literal interpretation of the theme: The diamond in Steven Kretchmer’ minimalist ring is held in place by the tension setting.
Love what you see? There are 190+ more pieces waiting for you at GIA in Carlsbad.
GIA recently hosted the Dreams of Diamonds exhibit. The once-in-a-lifetime show featured more than 4,000 carats of diamond jewelry!