- Ruby in Marble
- Miniature, 5.0 x 4.0 x 3.0 cm
- Mogok Valley, Burma
- Ex. Federico Barlocher
Rubies from Mogok are simply the most highly valued in the world, in gems or in minerals. The mining here is insane, with 500,000 workers in the Mogok Valley mining every day and splitting the few things found. We recently watched a video made for TV by Federico Barlocher, that seems to be the first time any Westerner has been allowed to make videos deep in the mines and of the full context of the mining operations. It is, in one word, humbling (the 2017 Dallas Mineral Collecting Symposium - dallassymposium.org - featured his talk and video, included in the Jan-Feb 2018 issue of the Mineralogical Record). Specimens are few, and now I understand why. It is incredibly rare to find an aesthetic ruby, and then to keep it from being cut is as great a challenge. This aesthetic, competition-quality specimen showcases a stunning pigeon-blood red ruby witht he classic patterning of the best Burma rubies (distinctive), measuring approximately 3 x 3 x 3 cm. It is from the longheld personal collection of Barlocher himself, who is one of the few Westerners to travel extensively in this region and deal in the specimens as well as the gems. His collection, built over decades of living in Burma, is one of the top few in the world, for specimens. This piece is simply shocking to see outside of a vault or a museum. It is a top level specimen for any collection, of something nealy unobtainable due to the competition with the gem world for these crystals.