Michael Dyber, Gem Sculptor Extraordinaire
When I think about innovative gem cutting today, a few names spring to mind. One of the first is Michael Dyber. Like René Lalique (1860-1945) who initiated a revolution in French jewelry design (image left) by asserting that his work should be valued for its design and craftsmanship, rather than for the value of the materials used, Dyber creates subtle miracles in materials such as the humble quartz, amethyst and tourmaline.
Michael Dyber’s total optical approach to lapidary breaks with the tradition of gem cutting that began in the Renaissance. His little masterpieces cross the line between the gem craftsman’s narrow pursuit of brilliance and scintillation and the constructivist artist’s desire to create a work of art with reflects a world with no physical reference. His work, together with artists like Steven Walters and Glenn Lehrer will, I believe,be one of the defining voices in jewelry making in the 20th Century. Pictured above is an one of a kind 89 carat aquamarine sculpture by Michael Dyber.
Dyber’s work is all about color, shape and balance. It is self-contained yet when set by the hand of a skilled and sensitve goldsmith who can preserve and amplify these qualites the colaboraton can produce a wearable masterpiece. Whether executed in quartz, tourmaline or Aquamarine, a Dyber centered piece projects beauty and sensitivity without ostentation.
Interpreting a Work of Art:The image pictured (below right) is an excellent example of the silent colaboration that goes on between an artist/goldsmith and a Dyber gem sculpture. The center stone is a citrine sculpture. The necklace designed and handmade in our workshop by Douglas Canivet in a sand finished 18k yellow gold. The designer has taken the planes and angles of the sculpture as his point of departure. The bezel set diamonds act as both an accent and a counterpoint to the center stone. Our current display includes 20 Dyber sculptures in Rutilated Quartz, Sunstone, Tourmaline, Aquamarine and Chrysoprase. We have prepared several sketches of possible interpretations, ring, pendant or necklace.
It is difficult to believe that each of Michael's unique creation is only made once. The gallery located at 81 Church Street, Lenox, Massachusetts and is open daily; Monday-Saturday 10-5, Sundays 11-4. For more information or an informative brochure, kindly give us a call at 800.773.0249 (413.637.1589 in Berkshire County) or visit our website: www.rwwise.com
An informative article by Richard W. Wise on the gem sculpture movement can be found at Modern Silver Magazine: http://www.modernsilver.com/secretsofthegemtrade.htm
"Every goldsmith, jeweller, gemologist, gem lab, gem dealer and gemstone collector should have a copy of this book, especially gem collectors and connoisseurs, to whom the book is primarily aimed."
Canadian Jeweler, June/July 2004
Now in paperback: www.secretsofthegemtrade.com
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An oval pink purplish spinel weighing 5.41 carats set with D-IF diamonds and pink sapphires. The ring is platinum with 22k inlays and a 22k inner sleeve.