With growing demand from buyers and collectors in Asia, especially those in mainland China, Hong Kong has now surpassed New York to become the world’s second-largest hub for jewellery auctions, ranking just behind Geneva. As buyers from the region gain more experience and knowledge of the high-end jewellery auction market, we’re seeing more contemporary Asian pieces on offer by some of the biggest auction houses in the world, sharing the spotlight with rare gems and vintage valuables from heritage jewellers such as Harry Winston and Van Cleef & Arpels.
Christie’s Hong Kong, one of the most proactive auction houses in the Chinese market, is hosting its upcoming Magnificent Jewels Spring Sale on 30 May. For this sale, Christie’s has arranged an unprecedented collaboration with four world-renowned Chinese jewellery designers: Adrian Cheng, Cindy Chao, Edmond Chin, and Michelle Ong. Crafting exquisite works that demonstrate their unique personalities and distinctive signature styles, these designers have all established themselves as prominent leaders in their field, and are well-renowned around the world. Learn more about these talented artists and their magnificent creations below.
Taiwanese bespoke jeweller Cindy Chao is celebrated for her vibrant and elaborate gem-encrusted jewels that often depict flora, fauna, and landscape images. She creates her designs through the use of hand-sculpted wax moulds; this allows her to explore her creations freely and infuse her subject matter with life and energy to craft miniature works of arts that can be admired from every angle. She often devotes thousands of hours to fine-tuning her pavé-setting, which are created using stones of many different sizes and hues, making sure the texture, colours, brilliance, and reflection are all top quality in order to enhance the silhouette and undulating layers of her stunning sculptural pieces.
Edmond Chin, founder of Hong Kong jewellery brand Etcetera Limited, considers it a continuous journey to invent new and innovative ways of stone-setting. Such dedication has landed him on multiple covers of the Christie’s catalogs over the past decade, not to mention setting no less than eight auction world records along the way. The key to his success lies not only in sourcing the finest and rarest gems and diamonds, but also to mount them in classical yet technologically innovative ways. At the same time, he ensures the colours on each piece match the skin tone of the wearer, offering a unique sensational effect that is highly coveted in the jewellery marketplace.
Michelle Ong, founder of Hong Kong jewellery brand Carnet, is known for her ability to transform hard and intransigent gemstones into soft, silky, and ethereal designs. She often takes inspiration from everyday experiences — whether it’s turning “a fabulous cloud in the sky” into a diamond brooch, or “restating shades of blue sapphires for a special cuff” from a “beautiful piece of blue and white porcelain”. Regardless of what she’s crafting, her one-of-a-kind jewels reflect her unique concepts of form and fantasy plus East-meets-West aesthetics. Contemporary yet timeless, her creations are often seen as works of art that exceed the intrinsic value of the gems themselves.
The auction will be held at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre on 30 May 2017. For those who are interested in taking a closer looking these fabulous creations, highlighted pieces will be available for public viewing from 26 to 30 May (check here for opening hours). You can also find more information on the above jewellery designers here.
Christie’s Hong Kong Magnificent Jewels Spring Sale, Convention Hall, Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, No. 1 Harbour Road, Wanchai, Hong Kong
This article is sponsored by Christie’s Hong Kong.