Christie’s June 20, 2017 “Magnificent Jewels & the Rockefeller Emerald” New York Sale, to be held at the New York Rockefeller Center, featuring a total of 271 jewelry lots, will be led by the 18.04-carat Rockefeller Emerald and diamond ring designed by Raymond C. Yard in 1948 for David Rockefeller, who inherited the 18.04-carat, exceptional Colombian emerald, which was part of a Van Cleef & Arpels emerald brooch, owned by his mother Abby Aldrich Rockefeller, subsequently dismantled after her death in 1948, and individual emeralds from the setting distributed among the Rockefeller children, by his father John D. Rockefeller. The American Gemological Laboratories (AGL) describes the emerald as exceptional, possessing an unusual combination of size, provenance, absence of treatment and quality factors that contribute favorably to its rarity and desirability. It further states that due to its rarity, an emerald of this quality and significant weight is not readily found in the market, and hence it is ranked among the top of its class.
The Rockefeller Emerald is Lot 126, titled, THE ROCKEFELLER EMERALD, A RARE AND HISTORIC EMERALD AND DIAMOND RING, BY RAYMOND YARD, with a pre-sale estimate of USD 4,000,000 – USD 6,000,000 placed on it, the highest valued lot of the sale. The size 7 3/4 ins., platinum ring designed in 1948 and signed Yard for Raymond Yard, and bearing no. A14976, is claw-set with an 18.04-carat, octagonal step-cut Colombian emerald, flanked by a trapezoid and circular-cut colorless diamonds on the shoulders of the ring.
Two lab reports by GGL and AGL bearing nos. 17050041 dated 8 May 2017 and CS 1084137 dated 3 May 2017 respectively, state that the origin of this emerald would be classified as Classic Colombia, with no indications of clarity enhancement.
The auction taking place on Tuesday, June 20, 2017 will be held in two sessions, the morning session starting at 10.00 am offering Lots 1 to 126 and the afternoon session starting at 2.00 pm offering Lots 127 to 273. The auction will be preceded by viewings held at the same venue from June 17, 2017 to June 19, 2017, viewing times being 10.00 am to 6.00 pm on the 17th; 1.00 pm to 6.00 pm on the 18th and 10.00 am to 5.00 pm on the 19th.
The auction also includes 58 lots (Lot 127 to 184) from An Important Collection of Louis Comfort Tiffany and Tiffany & Co. Jewels, which includes pieces formerly in the Louis C. Tiffany Garden Museum Collection put together by Takeo Horiuchi of Nagoya, Japan, between 1992 and 2004 and exhibited in the Louis C. Tiffany Garden Museum in Matsue, a town bordering the China Sea, a project that was finally abandoned after one of the largest earthquakes ever recorded, and the subsequent tsunami, devastated the Pacific coast of Honshu, in March 2011. In March 2012, Takeo Horiuchi sold his entire collection, some 620 works of art, including the jewelry from the Louis C. Tiffany Garden Museum Collection.
Another highlight of the emerald lots is Lot 249, titled, AN EMERALD AND DIAMOND RING, BY CARTIER, with a pre-sale estimate of USD 250,000 – USD 300,000. The size 6 1/4, platinum ring, signed Cartier, is claw-set with a 15.70-carat, cut-cornered rectangular step-cut Colombian emerald and the shoulders and upper hoop of the ring set with single-cut colorless diamonds. AGL report no. CS 1082727 dated 23 March 2017, states that the origin of the emerald would be classified as Colombia, with minor clarity enhancement of the traditional type, accepted in the trade.
COLORED DIAMOND LOTS
The second highlight of the sale based on pre-sale estimate is a colored diamond lot, bearing Lot No. 273 and titled, AN EXTRAORDINARY COLORED DIAMOND RING, with an estimate of USD 2,000,000 – USD 4,000,000. The size 6, platinum ring is set with a 5.01-carat, modified lozenge shaped, mixed-cut, fancy deep grayish bluish green diamond. GIA report no. 1182132234 dated 23 February 2017, states that the diamond is fancy deep grayish bluish green, natural color and VS2 clarity.
Other significant colored diamond lots are Lots 125 and 217.
Lot 125 – A RARE COLORED DIAMOND AND DIAMOND RING – has a pre-sale estimate of USD 1,300,000 – USD 1,800,000. The size 5 1/2, platinum and 18k white gold ring, is claw-set with a 4.42-carat, cut-cornered square modified brilliant-cut fancy intense green diamond, flanked on either side by a cut-cornered rectangular modified brilliant-cut colorless diamond, weighing approximately 1.02 and 1.00 carats each, within a circular-cut pink diamond surround. The upper half of the hoop of the ring, is set with colorless circular-cut diamonds. GIA report no. 1102900161 dated 22 July 2009, states that the diamond, weighing approximately 4.42 carats, is fancy intense green, natural color and VS2 clarity.
GIA report nos. 15213414 and 15332548 dated 27 June 2006 and 30 November 2006, in respect of diamonds weighing 1.02 and 1.00 carats respectively, state that the diamonds are D and E color and VS2 and VVS2 clarity, respectively.
Lot 217 is another colored diamond lot, with a pre-sale estimate of USD 525,000 – USD 725,000 and titled, A COLORED DIAMOND RING. The size 6, 18k yellow and pink gold ring is claw-set on 18k pink gold with a 5.43-carat, marquise modified brilliant-cut, fancy intense orangy-pink diamond, I-1 clarity diamond, highlighted by a kite-shaped, circular-cut yellow diamond surround, the diamonds mounted on 18k yellow gold. The bifurcated shoulders and the upper half of the hoop of the ring are also mounted with circular-cut yellow diamonds. GIA report no. 2185225177 dated 18 March 2017, states that the 5.43-carat, marquise modified brilliant-cut diamond is fancy intense orangy pink, natural color and I-1 clarity
COLORLESS DIAMOND LOTS
Top lot among colorless diamond lots is Lot 252, an unmounted diamond, with a pre-sale estimate of USD 1,600,000 – USD 2,200,000 and titled, AN IMPORTANT DIAMOND. The unmounted diamond is a D-color, Flawless clarity, round brilliant-cut diamond weighing 16.11 carats, with an excellent cut, polish and symmetry. GIA report no. 2171713701 dated 6 July 2016, states that the diamond is D color, Flawless clarity, with excellent cut, polish and symmetry. A diamond type classification letter accompanying the report states that the diamond has been determined to be a Type IIa diamond, which confirms the D-color status of the diamond. Type IIa, top-color (D-color) diamonds are chemically pure and structurally perfect, constituting about 1 to 2 % of all naturally occurring diamonds, and referred to in terms of superlatives such as “purest of the pure,” “whiter than white,” “brighter than bright,” “diamonds of the purest water” etc.
Significant colorless diamond lots include Lots 199 and 197.
Lot 199 – A CHARMING DIAMOND RING – with a pre-sale estimate of USD 500,000 – USD 700,000. The size 6, platinum ring is claw-set with a D-color, cushion brilliant-cut, Internally Flawless clarity diamond, weighing 7.11 carats. GIA report no. 2185117483 dated 31 January 2017, states that the diamond is D color, Internally Flawless clarity. Diamond type classification letter accompanying the report states that the diamond has been determined to be a Type IIa diamond, which confirms the D-Color status of the diamond.
Lot 197 – A DIAMOND RING, BY HARRY WINSTON – is another significant colorless diamond lot, with a pre-sale estimate of USD 360,000 – USD 420,000. The size 5 1/2, platinum ring signed Winston, is double claw-set with an E-Color, cut-cornered rectangular step-cut, VVS-2 clarity diamond weighing 8.32 carats, flanked on either side by a tapered baguette-cut diamond, on the shoulders of the ring. GIA report no. 2185059873 dated 5 December 2016 states that the diamond is E color and VVS2 clarity.
Top among the sapphire lots is Lot 251 – A SET OF SAPPHIRE AND DIAMOND JEWELRY – with a pre-sale estimate of USD 400,000 – USD 600,000. The jewelry suite consists of a sapphire and diamond fringe necklace and a matching pair of sapphire and diamond ear-pendants. The 17.5 ins. (44.5 cm) Princess length fringe necklace, consists of a neckchain of 16 cushion-cut blue sapphires, highlighted by a circular-cut and pear-shaped colorless diamond surrounds, from which alternating sapphire-centered fringes and diamond fringes arise. The sapphire-centered fringes are found only in the front half of the necklace, and consists of a median large fringe and four shorter fringes on either side. The alternating short diamond fringes consist of marquise-cut, circular-cut and pear-cut diamonds. The rear-half of the necklace has only short diamond fringes. The dimensions of the 25 cushion-cut blue sapphires in the fringe necklace vary from 9.35 x 9.05 x 4.62 mm to 21.83 x 21.50 x 13.30 mm.
The matching pair of ear-pendants 3 ins (7.62 cm) in length and made of platinum and 18k gold, each consists of a central long fringe and two shorter fringes on either side, arising from a cluster of a single cushion-cut blue sapphire surrounded by circular-cut colorless diamonds, with provision for suspension from the ear lobe. Each fringe in the ear-pendant consists of two sapphire-centered clusters surrounded by circular-cut colorless diamonds, separated by a cluster of two marquise-cut and a single pear-shaped diamond. Hence, each ear pendant has seven sapphire-centered clusters separated by a triad of two marquise-cut and pear-shaped diamonds. The dimensions of the 14 cushion-cut blue sapphires in the ear-pendants range from 9.40 x 7.70 x 4.68 mm to 13.10 x 9.43 x 7.39 mm. AGL reports nos. CS 1083802 and 1083801 A and B state that it is the opinion of the Laboratory that the origin of these sapphires would be classified as a combination of Ceylon (Sri Lanka) and Madagascar, with standard heat enhancement.
Other sapphire lots include Lot 254 and 248.
Lot 254 – A SAPPHIRE AND DIAMOND BROOCH, BY GRAFF, with an estimate of USD 100,000 – USD 150,000 is another significant sapphire lot of the sale. The 2 inch. (5.08 cm) long platinum brooch, signed Graff, is claw-set at the center, with an elongated rectangular step-cut blue sapphire, weighing 10.74 carats, flanked on either side by a rectangular step-cut colorless diamond, followed by a rectangular step-cut blue sapphire of comparable size with the diamond, and terminating on either side with a shield-shaped modified brilliant-cut, colorless diamond. AGL report no. CS 1084302 dated 8 May 2017 , state that the origin of the central sapphire would be classified as Thailand, with no gemological evidence of heat or clarity enhancement.
Lot 248 – A SAPPHIRE AND DIAMOND RING, BY VAN CLEEF & ARPELS, is another blue sapphire lot, with a pre-sale estimate of USD 40,000 – USD 60,000. The size 7 3/4, platinum ring that can also be worn as a pendant, was designed by Oscar Heyman & Brothers, for Van Cleef & Arpels. The ring is set with an oval-cut Burma blue sapphire, weighing 14.92 carats, highlighted by a colorless diamond surround, consisting of 8 oval-cut diamonds. AGL report no. CS 1084288 dated 8 May 2017, states that the origin of the blue sapphire would be classified as Burma (Myanmar), with no gemological evidence of heat or clarity enhancement.
Natural Pearl Lots
Significant natural pearl lots include Lots 190, 188 and 145
Top among the natural pearl lots is Lot 190, titled, A PAIR OF NATURAL PEARL AND DIAMOND EAR PENDANTS, with a pre-sale estimate of USD 170,000 – USD 200,000. Each of the 2 1/4 ins (5.72 cm) platinum ear-pendants, suspends a drop-shaped, light-gray, natural pearl by a bell-cap and line suspension. While one drop-shaped pearl is slightly baroque with dimensions of 12.05-13.10 x 17.90 mm the other drop-shaped pearl has an almost perfect drop-shape with dimensions of 10.60-13.00 x 19.00 mm. The bell-cap and line surmount are set with rose and single-cut diamonds. SSEF report no. 78411 dated 20 February 2015, states that the analysed properties confirm the authenticity of these saltwater natural pearls, with no indications of artificial color modification. GIA report no. 5161468290 dated 4 August 2014, states that the pearls are natural, saltwater pearls with no indications of treatment.
Lot 188 – AN ART DECO DIAMOND AND SEED PEARL BRACELET, BY CARTIER, is another natural pearl lot with an estimate of USD 30,000 – USD 50,000. The 7.25 ins, (18.42 cm) bracelet signed Cartier, no. 2616066 and designed around year 1926, consists of a wide seed pearl and platinum link mesh band, centering upon three diagonally-set openwork single and old-cut diamond plaques of foliate and floral motif, mounted in platinum. The lot is accompanied by a Certificate of Authenticity from Cartier dated 28 October 2009.
Lot 72 – AN ART DECO RUBY AND DIAMOND BRACELET, BY J.E. CALDWELL & CO – with a pre-sale estimate of USD 120,000 – USD 180,000 is the top ruby lot of the sale. The 7 5/8 ins (19.4 cm) platinum bracelet, Signed J.E.C. Co with no. W20203, was designed around year 1930, as a wide openwork old-cut diamond bracelet, set with carved ruby leaves. The Lot is accompanied by a letter of authenticity from J.E. Caldwell & Co. dated 5 November 2013.
Lot 88 – A RUBY AND DIAMOND BRACELET, BY CARTIER, with a pre-sale estimate of USD 70,000 – USD 100,000 is another significant ruby lot of the sale. The 6.875 ins (17.46 cm) platinum and 18k yellow gold bracelet, signed Cartier, no. 892065 is designed as a flexible three-row band, the center row with alternating oval-cut rubies and circular-cut diamonds, flanked on either side by a row of alternating pear-shaped diamonds and oval-cut rubies. AGL report no. CS 1084542 dated 18 May 2017 states that the origin of these rubies would be classified as Burma (Myanmar), with heat and clarity enhancement, heating residues, minor treatment.
HIGHLIGHTS FROM LOUIS COMFORT TIFFANY’S COLLECTION
Some of the highlights of Louis Comfort Tiffany’s Collection from the Louis C. Tiffany Garden Museum Collection put together by Takeo Horiuchi of Nagoya, Japan, include Lots 134, 145, 147, 171, 184.
Lot 134 – AN IMPRESSIVE SET OF MOONSTONE AND SAPPHIRE JEWELRY, BY LOUIS COMFORT TIFFANY, TIFFANY & CO with an estimate of USD 60,000 – USD 80,000 is an impressive lot from this collection. The suite consists of a necklace and pair of ear-pendants. The 14. 875 ins (37.78 cm) choker length platinum necklace signed Tiffany & Co is designed around 1910 consists of a series of graduated oval-shaped moonstone cabochons, trimmed by circular-cut blue sapphires, joined by circular-cut blue sapphire cluster links.
The matching pair of platinum ear-pendants, 2.75 ins (6.98 cm) in length, each consists of a pear-shaped moonstone, trimmed by circular-cut blue sapphires, with an upper loop set with circular-cut blue sapphires, suspended by a link-chain from a circular-cut blue sapphire cluster above, with provision for suspension.
Lot 145 – A DELICATE PEARL AND GOLD BIB NECKLACE, BY LOUIS COMFORT TIFFANY, TIFFANY & CO. with a pre-sale estimate of USD 20,000 – USD 30,000 is another interesting lot from the collection. The 14.5 ins (36.8 cm), choker length, gold Etruscan-style tapered bib necklace, Signed Louis C. Tiffany and designed around year 1905, is set at the front with alternating gold and seed pearl-set round filigree elements, enhanced by dog-tooth pearl drops.
Lot 147 – A MULTI-GEM, ENAMEL AND GOLD BROOCH, BY LOUIS COMFORT TIFFANY, TIFFANY & CO. – is another impressive lot with a pre-sale estimate of USD 15,000 – USD 20,000. The 4 ins (10.16 cm), circa 1920 brooch, signed Tiffany & Co. is designed as an openwork purple enamel and gold plaque, with gold filigree detail, set at the top with an oval-shaped jade cabochon and pear-shaped amethyst cabochon, the center a series of alternating turquoise and lapis lazuli tablets, suspending a tapered fringed of jade, turquoise, lapis lazuli, coral and amethyst beads, enhanced by gold openwork links with blue enamel detail.
Lot 171 – AN ANTIQUE RENAISSANCE REVIVAL MULTI-COLORED SAPPHIRE AND DIAMOND PENDANT BROOCH, BY PAULDING FARNHAM, TIFFANY & CO. with an estimate of USD 20,000 – USD 30,000 is another lot from the collection. The 2 1/8 ins (5.4 cm), circa 1900 yellow gold brooch,with Tiffany & Co. maker’s mark for Exposition Universelle, Paris, 1900, is designed as a scrolling openwork gold and lavender enamel plaque, centering upon a circular-cut pink sapphire within an old-cut diamond surround and set throughout with circular-cut multi-colored sapphires, enhanced by old-cut diamond accents.
Lot 184 -A BLACK OPAL, DEMANTOID GARNET, SAPPHIRE AND ENAMEL NECKLACE, BY LOUIS COMFORT TIFFANY, TIFFANY & CO. with a pre-sale estimate of USD 90,000 – USD 120,000 is another significant lot from the collection. The circa 1920, 16 1/2 ins (41.9 cm), choker length necklace, signed Tiffany & Co. suspends a drop black opal cabochon pendant, within a textured gold foliate mount, to the black opal cabochon surmount, within a circular-cut demantoid garnet, sapphire and gold bead scroll, enhanced by a circular-cut demantoid garnet floret, the reverse of green, blue and orange enamel foliate design, joined to a three-row gold rope chain, with clasp and enhancers of similar motif.