Perth: Rio Tinto has unveiled in New York an iconic piece of jewellery handcrafted using Argyle diamonds from its Australian mine and gold that has been mined and minted by Rio Tinto in the US.
The US$1.1 million necklace and ring known as Argyle Dreaming™, was created by famed international designer, master craftsman and jeweller John Calleija. The one-off necklace and ring pays homage to the ancient landscape and majestic colours of the east Kimberley region of Western Australia, home to the 1.6 billion year old Argyle gems.
Comprising 673 pink, white, yellow, blue and champagne Argyle diamonds and 237 grams of Rio Tinto’s Kennecott gold, Argyle Dreaming™ was a painstaking endeavour that took over 800 hours to create.
Mr Calleija said “This was a labour of love, an opportunity to work with the entire Argyle diamond colour palette, from a country that is imbued with rich heritage and dreamings. I am thrilled with the Argyle Dreaming™ necklace and ring. They are a permanent record of the most intriguing diamonds in the world and a beautiful endeavour that highlights Rio Tinto’s commitment to integrity and traceability in its diamonds and gold supply chain.“
The elegant and versatile necklace design has an exquisite 3.55 carat white Argyle diamond in its centre which can be switched out with the Argyle champagne diamond at the centrepiece of the ring. Argyle’s fancy coloured diamonds in shades of pink, blue and yellow are accented throughout the design.
Rio Tinto Vice President of sales and marketing Mr Alan Chirgwin said “Encapsulating a rich history and an extraordinary provenance, Argyle Dreaming™ is a contemporary treasure and an heirloom for tomorrow.”
Rio Tinto’s Argyle diamond mine is the world’s largest producer of coloured diamonds. The mine will close in 2020 after almost four decades of production. Rio Tinto’s Kennecott mine is a fully integrated mining operation located outside Salt Lake City in Utah, producing gold and silver as a by-product of its copper production.
The Argyle Dreaming™ necklace and ring will be showcased in New York and London before returning to Calleija’s stores in Australia.
Images of the Argyle Dreaming™ necklace and ring are available on Flickr.