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  July 2002 Edition

 

TAKING FRIDAY OFF--RIGHT IN OUR OWN BACKYARD

Gems from the Bowers Exhibition - Find out how to get there and more about the collection at www.bowers.org

 

Following my much-postponed retirement plan, I took last Friday off-and what did Maxine and I do? Well, it was something of a "postman's holiday" - we visited a Gem Show - let me spell that better - a GEM SHOW! - with an exclamation point. It's right in our own backyard, in Santa Ana.

It's at the Bowers Museum, and it is made up of representative pieces from the collection of Michael M. Scott. It's an extraordinary collection, and I wont waste many words in describing the gems, since seeing a beautiful stone is one thing, and reading a description of it, quite another. Let me say, however, that among my favorites were Paraiba Tourmalines, in striking blues and greens, and a deep blue 64-carat Sapphire (I guess I was "into blue" that afternoon). The cut stones were exhibited with specimens of rough, and very large rough, at that. Kept as specimens - and if you saw them, even you 'd agree they should be-they'd make any faceter's mouth water. 200 carats of Emerald, anyone? How about a 3 inch long, 1 inch wide clean clean Aquamarine? Enough said -- any faceter who can visit this show, should - it's on until September 1.

The collector, Michael M. Scott, was the first president of Apple Computer. He had an early love of faceted stones, but he postponed getting any until after he retired. In his very first experience, he bought what was supposedly a 5 ct. Tsavorite, that lab tests showed to be YAG. Well, that led to a deeper interest, and led to his becoming a collector-and ultimately led to this fine collection, and the exhibit that allows us all to share in the beauty of these stones.

Did I say there is jewelry exhibited, and carvings from Idar, and fantasy cuts? There are.

In Mr. Scott's Collection Notes, he writes that "anyone can be a collector", and then discusses how small stones are easier to find in a clean and flawless condition than larger ones. I've seen myself, that most of us faceters are collectors-even if it is all our own faceted stones-in the sense that we'll concentrate on particular stones, or particular designs, or stones that present particular difficulty, or big stones, or stimulants of famous stones, etc. etc. Hey-I'm even a collector of rough-I've still got those best pieces in a drawer waiting for the right time to do them (I can't imagine there's anyone else out there that does that). Well, I guess my time for getting after that special rough is now-it'll be a good way to spend those Fridays off.

So long for now...

Joe Rubin

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