Light & Stone: Gems from the Collection of Michael Scott

ROM Magazine, Winter 2008 | Go to article overview

Light & Stone: Gems from the Collection of Michael Scott


DECEMBER 20, 2008, TO MID-DECEMBER 2009 * ONE OF THE WORLD'S GREATEST PRIVATE GEM COLLECTIONS

[ILLUSTRATION\s OMITTED]

When you think of emeralds do you think green? You may be surprised to learn that traditional gems come in a variety of colours. Beryl, the variety of stone that includes emerald, ranges from pink morganite and blue aquamarine to the rare red emerald and the extremely rare colourless goshenite. Rare garnets, prized for their diamond-like brilliance, come in every colour except blue with the two most desirable species--demantoid and tsavorite--being green. Even diamond has blue, yellow, cognac, orange, green, and purple forms.

Breathtaking and unmatched specimens of precious stones like these, as well as gem crystals, jewellery, and gem artworks, are featured in Light & Stone: Gems from the Collection of Michael Scott, on display in the ROM's Gallery of Gems and Gold. Arguably the most important private collection in North America, the Michael Scott Collection has few rivals in the world outside royal families. More than 200 superb pieces, all carefully chosen by Scott, represent the quality and diversity of crystals and gems.

Among the exhibition's highlights is a spectacular tiara featuring the world's largest faceted tanzanite encircled by 803 rare tsavorite garnets and 913 brilliant-cut diamonds.

"Collecting the world's largest and best examples of gem species has been my passion for almost 25 years," says Scott, who was also the first CEO of Apple Computers. He has devoted himself to learning what makes the right gem a priceless treasure while another is considered almost worthless.

His collection contains numerous rarities and newly discovered stones. The rare tanzanite, a relatively new mineral discovered in 1968 by Maasai herdsmen in the foothills of Mt. …

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