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Sir Zoltan David Awarded Prestigious Smithsonian Honor: “Iris” Pendant Named Permanent Centerpiece of Moonstone Exhibition
His award-winning necklace “Iris” will be permanently installed in early 2018 as the centerpiece of the Moonstone Collection in the Feldspar Exhibit at the Smithsonian.
By: Diamond World News Service
Sep 2 2017 9:59AM
Reference: 15562  

Zoltan David Iris
Zoltan David Iris

Renowned jewellery artist, Sir Zoltan David, has been awarded a unique, prestigious honor by the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. His award-winning necklace “Iris” will be permanently installed in early 2018 as the centerpiece of the Moonstone Collection in the Feldspar Exhibit at the Smithsonian. Sir Zoltan David is the only Texas jeweller in history to receive such a distinguished honor from the Smithsonian.  

“I am delighted to have my work become a part of American culture,” says Sir Zoltan David. “This is a literal dream come true for me. As a young man, at the early stages of my training in fine jewellery, I remember standing in the Smithsonian in awe of the craftsmanship surrounding me and hoping that someday my work could be on display there. What an honour to have my Iris necklace showcased with the some of the finest jewellery houses in the world. I am a proud small business owner who is truly living the American dream, and I am grateful now to be sharing my work with people from around the country and across the globe.”

The Iris necklace won the 2016 American Gem Trade Association’s Spectrum Award and was prominently displayed at the AGTA show in Tucson last year where curators from the Smithsonian saw it and became enchanted with the unique properties and the natural beauty of this magnificent moonstone pendant.  The curators have now completed their multi-year search for the perfect piece to highlight as the center of the moonstone collection in the Smithsonian Feldspar exhibit.  A custom display and lighting are under construction and the museum plans to display the Iris necklace beginning in early 2018 in a permanent position of importance.   

A rare shimmering white 35.63 ct Cat’s Eye Marquise Cut Moonstone from India forms the centerpiece of this beautiful necklace. The pendant is enhanced with 35 perfectly matched gem quality 5MM moonstones of an iridescent blue hue with a total weight of 18.20 ct.  These radiant stones are set in a unique Zoltan David creation of blue patinated bronze with pure platinum shaped inlay and ideal cut diamonds throughout. The reverse of the pendant is engraved with “By the light of a silvery moon, an ocean of life awaits your magical touch.”  

David has long been an innovator in the craft of metallurgy, using old world goldsmithing techniques combined with cutting edge technology like 3-D laser printing with metals to creatively marry different metals in a permanent connection that forms a unique and distinctive look. The effect is surprising, artistically refreshing and unpredictable. Never having used a wax mold, Sir Zoltan’s palette is the precious metals themselves.  He blends, fuses, patinates and crafts highly distinctive works of art that are classic, durable, functional and most importantly, wearable.  His authentic approach to the jewelry art form is ground-breaking as he seeks to pattern metal and stone to project light onto the viewer’s eye in a very particular way.  

“I am really working with light,” says David. “The craftsmanship is equally important to the design. My curiosity and my authentic exploration of natural, precious materials have allowed me to create unprecedented advances in metallurgy. But at the end of the day, it is the beautiful piece of jewellery

that will become the treasured heirloom. Iris is now America’s heirloom moonstone.  Long may it bring pleasure to everyone who sees it at the Smithsonian.”

The value of the Iris pendant necklace is estimated at $56,000. 



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