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Feature: Singular Sensations

The Editors

Only one. That is the essence of a masterpiece. A celebrated painting or sculpture can surely be copied, but those reproductions can never quite capture the precise aura of the original. Even the artist who rendered the first cannot duplicate a work of art exactly. In fine jewelry, nature, more than anything else, dictates whether a piece can be reproduced—there is no guaranteed supply of truly extraordinary natural gemstones. For this reason, a jewelry designer recognizes that an exceptional stone requires exceptional treatment, because he or she may never again see another with the same characteristics. When a stone is not the centerpiece, technique steps into the spotlight. A designer who specializes in intricate metalwork may create a pièce de résistance that expresses the true height of the craft. But the investment in time and talent required for such a creation prohibits their reproduction. Ultimately, jewelry can attain the allure of high art only when it exhibits the thrilling combination of a spectacular one-of-a-kind stone, finely manipulated metal, and an artist’s inspired vision.

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