By Ashley Bailey
, Thursday, April 19, 2007
From GIA, Carlsbad, Calif. - The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) Museum launched its 2007 Lecture Series, “The Synergy of Art & Science,” with speaker Carolyn Jacoby’s South Sea Pearl presentation on Jan. 19 at GIA’s Carlsbad campus.
In this year's lecture series, the GIA Museum will devote seminars throughout the year to examining the interaction between artistry and the science of gemology.
Jacoby’s lecture explored this topic by looking into the culturing of South Sea pearls in the isolated region between Northern Australia and Burma. She also discussed the creation of the South Sea Pearl Consortium’s (SSPC) touring pearl exhibit, “White Magic.”
“Pearl culturing is a great example of art and science working in collaboration, and we are fortunate to have Carolyn Jacoby of the South Sea Pearl Consortium and Paspaley Pearling Company here to explain the history, lore, and wonder of the SouthSea pearl,” said Elise Misiorowski, GIA’s Museum director.
Jacoby explained how organizations such as Paspaley cultivate pearls in Pinctada maxima oyster shells, which are native to the South Seas. These cultured pearls are then carefully protected in their natural environment for two to six years, allowing them to produce thick nacre, creating the large pearls for which the region is known.
Jacoby advised her audience to explain to customers the “Five Virtues of the South Sea Pearl,” which she lists as size, complexion, shape, color, and luster. “When you show pearls to your customers, demonstrate how light interacts with the pearl's surface by pointing out its luster, sheen, and glow,” she said.
The “White Magic” exhibit, which the lecture inaugurated at GIA, was created to celebrate the 50-year anniversary of the establishment of the first South Sea pearl farm, Jacoby said. The “White Magic” collection premiered in New York in 2005 and has toured cities throughout the world. It is now at its final destination of Carlsbad, where it will be on display until May 15.
“White Magic” was the creation of Suzi Jarrell, communications director of the SSPC, who invited 17 internationally known designers to each createa unique piece of jewelry featuring South Sea cultured pearls donated by Paspaley. This joint collaboration between the SSPC and the designers tookone year to complete.
Jacoby, a Graduate Gemologist (G.G), stressed the importance of a GIA education. “My GIA education gave me access to people and opportunities I never thought I would have.”
She is a 17-year-veteran of the jewelry industry whose experience includes working for the well-known jeweler William Goldberg of Goldberg Diamond Corp. and serving as the director of membership for the Jewelry Information Center. Jacoby was appointed administration manager for the Australian Pearl Center (USA) in 2000 and has served as SSPC senior representative for North America since 2005.
The GIA Museum’s 2007 Lecture Series will continue on April 4 with a presentation by award-winning jeweler Marianne Hunter. Her lecture will be on “Inspirational Interplay: The Collaboration of Artist and Materials.”The entry fee is $10 and all lectures areopen to the public on a space-available basis. To RSVP or to add your name to the lecture series mailing list, call 800-421-7250, ext. 4169.
An independent nonprofit organization, the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) is recognized as the world's foremost authority in gemology. Established in 1931, GIA has translated its expert knowledge into the most respected gemological education available. In 1953, the Institute created the International Diamond Grading System™ which, today, is recognized by virtually every professional jeweler in the world. Through research, education, gemological laboratory services, and instrument development, the Institute is dedicated to ensuring the public trust in gems and jewelry by upholding the highest standards of integrity, academics, science, and professionalism. GIA’s website address is http://www.gia.edu/. Media queries contact: Laura Simanton, 760-603-4112.
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