Stone Whisperer

  • Photo by Fung Tsang
    By using titanium instead of a heavier metal, Chan is able to create pieces that are large and sculptural yet still lightweight. Photo by Fung Tsang
  • Photo by Fung Tsang
    By using titanium instead of a heavier metal, Chan is able to create pieces that are large and sculptural yet still lightweight. Photo by Fung Tsang
  • Photo by Fung Tsang
  • Photo by Fung Tsang
<< Back to Robb Report, January 2015

A master carver, sculptor, and metallurgist, Wallace Chan (wallace-chan.com) single-handedly executes his visionary designs, imbuing stones and metal with an artistic narrative. “To delineate the spiritual through forms has all along nourished my world of jewelry making,” says Chan. Based in Hong Kong, he spent years forging large-scale sculptures and carvings for monasteries during what he calls his Buddhist-art stage. For the Return of the King cuff, Chan carved nephrite jade into the shapes of ancient totems that denote blessings, good luck, and a sense of grandeur. The jade is set in purple-hued titanium inlaid with swirling diamonds and jade. Chan practices a remarkably delicate stone-setting technique that involves cutting jade, diamonds, and other gems to form mortise and tenon joints with which the stones hold each other in place. By using titanium instead of a heavier metal, he is able to create pieces such as the cuff and the Mon Rêve (French for “my dream”) ring  that are large and sculptural yet still lightweight. The ring’s 29.22-carat green tourmaline and 12.38-carat rubellite are showcased in a setting that, to Chan, resembles a castle from a dream, one that sparkles with diamonds.

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