Apple chief design officer Sir Jony Ive and celebrated designer Marc Newson have created the (RED) diamond, an all-lab-diamond ring that will be sold by Sotheby’s in Miami on Dec. 5 as part of the third (RED) Auction during Design Miami.
The item, which will be custom-created from a single piece of rough, is estimated to fetch between $150,000 and $250,000, Sotheby’s says. All proceeds will go to support the fight against AIDS.
While this is not the first all-diamond ring—Indian company Shawish created a similar ring seven years ago—this one is at least intended to be worn.
The item will be custom-fitted to the winner’s finger, up to size five, says Ye-Hui Goldenson, spokesperson for Diamond Foundry, the lab-grown diamond producer that is creating the diamond that will be used for the ring.
“We aren’t giving a fixed carat weight, as that will depend on the size we are making it,” she says.
The ring’s interior will be cylindrically cut for the desired smoothness using water-jet and laser-beam technology. The finished ring will be outfitted with between 2,000 and 3,000 facets, some as small as several hundred micrometers.
A Diamond Foundry statement says that it faced a “considerable challenge” getting its factory to produce a piece of rough with the necessary dimensions to be custom-fitted for a ring, adding that no “existing earth-extracted diamond would be sufficiently pure enough” to work.
“It required coaxing the first 10 atoms of a layer into believing that a certain rare metal is a diamond, [so] these atoms would assemble into real diamond and allow the creation of diamond blocks of previously unprecedented size,” it said.
Ive and Newson, a celebrated industrial designer who now works for Apple and helped design its smartwatch, have previously collaborated on pieces for Sotheby’s (RED) auctions. Previous auctions have raised a combined $68 million for the fight against AIDS.
(Photo courtesy of Diamond Foundry)