Rio Tinto is about to launch the first installment of its "Beyond Rare" tender, an art series that will showcase the legacy inventory of pink and red diamonds from its shuttered Argyle Mine in Western Australia and intense yellow diamonds from its Diavik Diamond Mine, located beneath a frozen lake in the Barren Lands of Northern Canada.
Presented as 46 lots, the inaugural collection — dubbed "The Art Series 01" — comprises 87 polished diamonds, weighing 29.96 carats in total. Among the highlights are the following:
— Seven "Masterpiece" sets of Argyle Pink Diamonds™ and yellow Diavik diamonds, selected for their unique beauty
— A rarified offering of 11 perfectly matched pairs of colored diamonds
— 30 exquisite single diamonds, including one remarkable Fancy Red Argyle diamond
Each "Masterpiece" will be accompanied by bespoke art created by Western Australian artist Sam Price, whose creative inspiration is derived from the "surreal chain of earthly events that led to the birth of nature’s most exquisite works," according to Rio Tinto.
“Rio Tinto has a rich history of innovative diamonds sales and marketing events and this carefully curated collection of rare jewels will be in strong demand by the world’s finest jewelers, collectors and diamond connoisseurs,” noted Sinead Kaufman, chief executive of Rio Tinto Minerals.
The now-depleted Argyle mine was shuttered in November of 2020. During its 37 years in operation, the mine famously produced between 90% and 95% of the world’s pink and red diamonds.
Red is said to be the rarest diamond color in the world. The Argyle-sourced specimen, above, the "Argyle Everglow," was part of the mining company's 2017 tender. The diamond weighed 2.11 carats and was the first 2-carat-plus fancy red diamond ever offered by Rio Tinto.
“The market fundamentals that drive value appreciation for Argyle pink and red diamonds have never been stronger – a combination of severely constrained supply, with the closure of Argyle, and unwavering global demand for truly scarce gems," said Patrick Coppens, general manager of sales and marketing for Rio Tinto’s Diamonds business.
Rio Tinto has not revealed how many Argyle pink diamonds remain in its legacy inventory, but confirmed to thewest.com.au that this latest collection will be one of the last.
The lots will be displayed in Australia, Switzerland and Belgium, with bids closing on November 20, 2023.
Credits: Images courtesy of Rio Tinto.