Sir Jony Ive, Apple’s Chief Design Officer, and renowned industrial designer Marc Newson has designed a unique diamond ring, which will be auctioned by Sotheby’s in Miami on December 5th with proceeds going toward the fight against AIDS.
Consistent with their mutual obsession with transforming raw material into objects of value, Ive & Newson’s design is singular, clear and uncompromised by the traditional metal settings and bands that have previously been required to create ‘diamond rings’. Theirs has been created by removing material rather than adding - an ambition made possible by the extraordinary scale of the stone which enabled the ring to be completely made of diamond.
The process to create this solid diamond ring was indeed a mammoth task. Diamond Foundry America’s leading synthetic producer of diamonds faced a new challenge: to create a block of diamond with the dimensions necessary and to be polished into a ring of this size. No base plate of the required dimensions existed, and no existing earth extracted diamond would be sufficiently pure enough to allow growing a rough diamond of this size.
To create this, it required coaxing the first ten atoms of a layer into believing that a certain rare metal is a diamond, these atoms would assemble into real diamond and allow the creation of diamond blocks of previously unprecedented size. This process was not previously considered possible. Through this process and Diamond Foundry’s plasma reactor technology, they managed to create the first diamond blocks of the required size for this design project.
After this, the logistics of how to cut and polish a stone of this size needed to be established - a task that challenged Diamond Foundry’s Antwerp based master cutter who has polished some of the world’s largest diamonds. The shape and model of the finished stone are revolutionary since there were no guidelines, the cutters had to create it from scratch and the custom tools had to be ordered from a specialized diamond tools supplier in Belgium. The diamond block is faceted with several thousand facets, some of which are as small as several hundred micrometers with the finished ring having between 2000-3000 facets something never seen before on a single piece of jewellery.
The ring will be auctioned by Sotheby’s during Art Basel Miami Beach and Design Miami/ on the evening of 5 December 2018 –with expectations to raise between $150,000 and $250,000 for (RED) in its fight against AIDS