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Expert gemmologists to speak at DANAT in Jewellery Arabia 2017


Manama, Nov. 21 (BNA): Uncovering the findings of an archaeological expedition on Cubagua island in the Caribbean in which a treasure of natural pearls dating to 15th Century was found buried in a clay jar, Peter Balogh from the Funda Prehistoria (Prehistoric Foundation) will be giving a public talk at the DANAT exhibit in Jewellery Arabia, which commenced on 21st November. As part of the diverse education and training services provided by DANAT (the Bahrain Institute for Pearls & Gemstones), he will be joined by the globally renowned gemmologist, Vincent Pardieu from VP Consulting.

Throughout the five-day jewellery affair, in addition to the wide array of services offered by DANAT, the guest speakers will cover a range of fascinating topics including new sapphire discoveries in Madagascar, ruby deposits in Asia as well as the history and exploitation of natural pearls in the Isle of Cubagua, in northeastern Venezuela and which was discovered by Christopher Columbus.

Building a reputation for gemmological excellence while serving leading institutions, Pardieu led over one hundred global field expeditions and published extensive research material on his findings. He gained comprehensive experience in key positions in the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), the Asian Institute of Gemological Sciences (AIGS) and the Gübelin Gem Laboratory. At the jewellery expo, his open to the public daily lectures will focus on the latest discoveries of blue sapphires in Madagascar, a major sapphire supplier since the 1990s.

After sighting fine blue sapphires near Andranondambo in the southern region, other important discoveries near Diego in the north of the island and Ilakaka and Sakaraha in the south positioned Madagascar as the world’s largest supplier of sapphires. More recently, new sapphire deposits in the northeast region, near Ambatondrazaka, were found to have produced exceptional high quality 50 carat stones, the finest quality observed in the island during the past three decades.

Furthermore, he will enlighten visitors and gemstone enthusiasts on newly found amphibole ruby deposits. Luckily, at the start of the new century, following the exhaustion of deposits in Thailand combined with the ban on Burmese stones in the US and Europe in 2007, the ruby trade discovered reliable sources in Africa. Unlike those in Burma and Thailand, rubies in Tanzania, Mozambique, Malawi, Madagascar or Greenland were not found in marble deposits, but in amphibole deposits with similar features.

At the same time, the DANAT presence at Jewellery Arabia this year will feature Balogh who is responsible for the privately funded not for profit Funda Prehistoria, established to preserve Venezuelan archaeological artefacts. Balough will discuss the recent findings related to natural pearls in Cubagua and the history of their trade and importance to Europe, after the discovery of the island and the industry by Christopher Columbus.

The daily lectures will begin at 7pm with the last talk scheduled to begin at 9pm. The international guest speakers will be joined by DANAT’s team of experts who will also be talking about pearl testing in DANAT at different scheduled times every day.

Commenting on the guest speakers, Kenneth Scarratt, Chief Executive Officer of DANAT said, “In addition to verification services, our association with globally renowned gemmologists is indicative of our objective to offer clients the very best service and latest insights in gemmology. Visitors, enthusiasts and clients are welcome to visit our stand in the Al Fanar Hall to enhance their knowledge of the history of precious stones while enjoying other complimentary offerings including a dazzling exhibit of exquisite jewels from different parts of the world.”