Alumni Chapter

California - Golden Gate Chapter: Gem Art of the Taj Mahal and Shah Jahan


Presenter: Dona Dirlam, GG

Join Dona Dirlam for a presentation on the Mughal era, which is known for the extravagance in the architecture, art objects, and the connoisseurship and power of gems.

Dona will illustrate in particular the gem treasures from emperor Shah Jahan. From the Taj Mahal’s which was built in the 1600’s as a loving tribute to his wife to his fabled peacock throne, Dona will highlight the stunning collection of Mogok rubies, Colombian emeralds, Tajikistan spinels, Arabian Gulf pearls, Ceylon sapphires, and Golconda diamonds, which can be found throughout his masterpieces.

Dirlam will further examine the trade routes, explorers, and the key role India played in the global gem trade in 17th Century India.  

Dona Dirlam, M.S. G.G. F.G.A., was the director of the GIA Library and Resource Center, the world’s largest library on gemstones and jewelry.  As the collection curator, Dona was responsible for over 60,000 books and journals as well as the digitizing of the rarest books for public and global gem industry access.  A noted author, Dona has won the Gems and Gemology Most Valuable Article Award five times. Dona earned her Masters of Sciences in Geology and Geosciences as well as her GG.


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