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Sotheby’s Unveiled One Of The World’s Largest Polished Diamonds In Dubai

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For a number of years now, colored diamonds have been seen adorning some of the world’s most stylish celebrities and billionaires, and in the same vein, Sotheby’s unveiled the Golden Canary in Dubai.

Weighing in at a whopping 303.10 carats, the deep yellow diamond is one of the largest polished diamonds in the world, as well as the “largest flawless or internally flawless” diamond ever graded by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA).

The astonishing diamond also boasts a peerless history and provenance – formerly weighing just over 407 carats as the “Incomparable Diamond.” Recut from its original shield-shape into a classic pear-shape, the Golden Canary is now deeper in colour, brighter in hue and more elegant in profile, rightfully claiming its spot in the pantheon of exceptional diamonds. The Golden Canary is set to highlight Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels auction in New York on 7th December 2022, with an estimate in the region of $15 million, and offered without reserve, with bidding starting at just $1.

Quig Bruning, Head of Jewelry for Sotheby’s America, said in a released statement, “We have had an exceptional year of presenting extraordinary colored diamonds at our global jewelry auctions, as the demand and appetite for these rarities continues to grow.” Continuing, “Steeped in history, The Golden Canary is one of the most exquisite diamonds to ever be discovered, not only for its sheer size and intensity in color, but for its stunning beauty that is sure to captivate collectors around the world. Sotheby’s is privileged to help write the next chapter for this incomparable, reborn gem.”

Making up a vanishingly small number of all diamonds mined, yellow diamonds are significantly rarer than their colorless counterparts. Fancy yellow diamonds make up just .006% of all diamonds mined, and of these, only a tiny percentage will be internally flawless. With its almost incomprehensible combination of size and saturation, the Golden Canary is quite literally unprecedented.

The Golden Canary’s well-known history begins in the early 1980s in the Democratic Republic of Congo where the stone was found amongst a pile of rubble by a young girl playing in the backyard of her uncle’s house. At the time, miners from the nearby MIBA diamond mine had considered the discovery too bulky to be diamond-bearing and had discarded it. They hadn’t realized that the rubble turned out to be an 890-carat rough diamond, one of the largest rough diamonds the world had ever seen. The girl gave the stone to her uncle, who, in turn, sold it to local diamond dealers.

It was then first presented to the public in 1984 at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, displayed alongside the world’s most legendary diamonds. Over the course of the next five years, the rough diamond was cut into 15 finished stones, from which the largest of the resulting diamonds, a Fancy Deep Brownish-Yellow weighing 407.49 carats, became formally known as the “Incomparable.”

Given the global interest in a treasure of this nature, the diamond will be showcased on a worldwide tour. Unveiled on 17th October 2022 in Sotheby’s galleries in Dubai, it is about to embark on a journey to other cities around the world including Taipei, Geneva, and Hong Kong.

Katia Nounou Boueiz, Head of Sotheby’s UAE also added, “We are excited to continue to celebrate the UAE as the ultimate destination for lovers of luxury, with the global unveiling of a gemstone of such extraordinary calibre alongside a selling exhibition curated by our team here on the ground.”

Alongside the global unveiling of the Golden Canary, Sotheby’s Dubai launched a selling exhibition showcasing an edit of rare luxury items, all of which are available for immediate purchase. Open to the public until 4th November 2022, the selling exhibition includes an outstanding selection of hand-embellished Hermès Birkin and Kelly handbags lovingly transformed by luxury brand Jay Ahr, elevating each bag to work of art status. It is the first time the collection is showcased in the Middle East. Lebanese Jewellery designer Gaelle Khouri brings her new collection to the exhibition, including pieces in yellow, white, or rose gold often enhanced by diamonds and precious stones. Additional items within the exhibition include striking contemporary photography by Morocco-born artist Lalla Essaydi, best known for her depiction of Arab female identity.

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