Flying Diamond Engagement Ring
18k Yellow Gold / Diamond (0.25ct)
The winged Victory motif puts at center stage the most sought-after and sparkling of all precious gemstones: the diamond. The diamond has a strange power to refract light in a powerful, magical way. The brilliance of its light has an appeal that is so compelling, so natural, that even animals are attracted to it. Diamonds have long held pride of place in the crowns of emperors and kings, and the largest of them were used as eyes in statues of Hindu goddesses. The idea to put wings on a diamond is one of many concepts that Tony Lent thinks he might have invented but could also have stolen. If Picasso was right, that good artists copy and great artists steal, perhaps the greatest artists steal without even knowing it. Certainly, whatever imagery Tony has borrowed from the history of art, craft, and jewelry itself, he has filtered through an original, and singular, imagination. This design is no exception. It was certainly influenced by Renaissance and Baroque decorative arts, in which lots of things are flying, as well as the winged mountings and pavé wing pieces of late Victorian jewelry. But it also signifies the freedom and unboundedness of flight, and the dreamworld quality of the sky. Tony thinks of dreams themselves as sparkly, as filled with a special kind of light that reminds him of the sharp, crisp light of diamonds. He is also informed by his reading of science-fiction and fantasy, especially where jewels feature as magical objects. In the work of Samuel R. Delany, in particular, gemstones often appear as technological devices with supernatural optical powers. They also serve as metaphors for the concepts of reflection and refraction themselves. On the one hand, a diamond is just a sparkly stone. But on the other, it can represent transcendence, and that sparkle can somehow awaken in us a desire to reach for it, to soar far beyond our Earthly limitations. And so Tony decided to supply the wings.