Update: the stone sold today for $83m
The records are not all coming in Contemporary art. Just before Christie’s phenomenal sale, the Geneva jewelry auction set its own record for an organge diamond that many suspect won’t last through today. That’s because Sotheby’s has its own jewelry sale led by the Pink Star diamond which many think can make $60m or more which would take away top honors from the Graff Pink which made $46m three years ago:
The oval-cut type-IIa stone is the most valuable diamond ever to be offered at auction according to Sotheby’s, and the largest internally flawless fancy vivid pink diamond ever to be graded by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA).
“It ticks all the boxes in terms of perfection,” says David Bennett, chairman of Sotheby’s international jewellery division for Europe and the Middle East and also chairman of Sotheby’s Switzerland, who will preside over the sale. When the diamond went on show in October “there were gasps from many of the people who came to see it”, he says.
Mined in Africa as a 132.5-carat rough diamond by De Beers in 1999 and cut and polished for two years by Steinmetz Diamonds, it was unveiled and exhibited before being sold privately in 2007. A diamond such as the Pink Star comes up “maybe twice in a lifetime”, says Russell Shor, a GIA senior industry analyst. “You can’t even say it is one in a million – it is one in an X-number of million.”
The Pink Star is the latest challenger in a series of record-breaking lots at high-profile auctions as savvy buyers seek exceptional pieces and stones, their confidence boosted by gemological laboratory reports.
“It is going to appeal to the people who want the rarest of the rare, and these days at auction that seems to be what is being sought,” says Mr Bennett.