I had the enormous pleasure of being invited back to the School of Jewelry Arts. As you know, I have already taken the enamel course you can read here.
This time, I took classes to learn a little more about the world that fascinates me so much, the world of gemstones. The return on the journey to the heart of the earth and the extremely rewarding experience.
Van Cleef & Arpels created the Ecole des Arts Joailliers to unveil the very secret worlds of jewelery and watchmaking. This is the first introductory jewelery school for everyone, offering introductory and experimenting courses à la carte – in French or in English. Each class is led by a team of two teachers.
If you wish to better know the world of gemstones, L’Ecole offers 4 courses to choose from:
- Discover the gemstones
- Recognize the gemstones
- The fascination of the diamond 1: history and legends
- The fascination of diamond 2: science and gemology
During the course Discover the gemstones, I plunged into the heart of the stones, from the birth of the gems to their extraction up to the size of the stones. Of course I touched and manipulated a few. Their incredible diversity and their beauty completely seduced me. I also understood what makes their value.
Through the course Recognize the gemstones, I tamed the tools of the gemologist. I was able to exercise my eye by analyzing gems of color. I had the impression of transporting myself to the mythical stone markets like: Chanthaburi in Thailand, Ratnapura in Sri Lanka or Bogota in Colombia.
For nearly 4 hours, I analyzed with the other participants the gemstones in red, blue and green tones. In order to unravel the mystery of stones, we observed very similar stones. We have distinguished and identified the stones, to the eye at first. Then we used the tools of the gemologist such as the magnifying glass, the polariscope, the dichroscope, the refractometer, the spectroscope. We measured the density as well as the weight of the stones. Our initial conclusions have been modified throughout these stages. We achieved our goal: to recognize the gem without being mistaken.
© Ecole des Arts Joailliers
Leaving the colored gemstones, I continued the courses to deepen my knowledge of the diamond. First, we learned the story of the mythical diamonds that shocked the lives of men and women by contemplating famous replicas of diamonds. On the diamond roads, traveling from continent to continent, to understand where and how men have found and exploited gems. From the mythical mines of Golconde to the South African deposits, through the pink diamonds of Australia, I also discovered the legends of the diamond.
Replicas of the nine diamonds says Cullinan, rock crystal, French work, around 1950
The last course allowed me to learn the latest advances in chemistry, geology and physics and to follow the evolution of technologies to understand what makes the diamond invincible and fascinating. I discovered the secrets of stone: its unique chemical composition, its improbable birth, its unequaled hardness, the mystery of its brilliance and its fires. The exercise of recognizing the real diamond among the other similar stones really pleased me.
If like me, you are passionate about gemstones, don’t hesitate to book a next course at the Ecole des Arts Joailliers.