Award-winning jewelry designer Ziad Noshie of Houston, Texas, has created a specially designed piece for the Gemological Institute of America’s (GIA) Signature Collection. Titled “Quetzál,” the piece honors the national bird of Guatemala with a life-size replica made with more than 1,100 gemstones. It is on display at the Institute’s Robert Mouawad Campus as a permanent installment of the GIA Museum.
“Quetzál” is encrusted with rubies, sapphires, and tsavorite garnets in a pattern that resembles the bird’s colorful red, blue, and green feathers. It is also adorned with black and colorless diamonds set in 18k white, rose, and yellow gold with sterling silver accents. The bird measures about 12 inches in length and is perched on a polished branch of black coral.
Noshie will be inducted into GIA’s prestigious Circle of Honor in 2005 in recognition of his gift and will join others who have made non-cash donations valued at $100,000 or more.
Noshie, a native of Lebanon, moved to the United States in 1966 to study jewelry design and manufacturing at what is now the Glassell School of Art in Houston. He opened Almaza Jewelers there in 1968 and has won 28 jewelry and design awards with his creations.