Gem News International Gems & Gemology, Spring 2019, Vol. 55, No. 1

The Granada Gallery

Paraíba-type tourmalines from Mozambique alongside gold nugget.
Figure 1. Paraíba-type tourmalines from Mozambique. Left to right: a 29.34 ct oval, a 3.01 ct pear set in a rose gold ring, a 51.62 ct oval, and a 65.17 ct trillion cut. They were displayed with a 224.6 g gold nugget from Victoria, Australia. Photo by Robert Weldon/GIA, courtesy of the Granada Gallery.

Housed in a 1908 vintage Arts and Crafts building on Granada Avenue in Tucson, the Granada Gallery is replete with what its owners call “items of geologic relevance,” or rare mineral and fossil specimens. These are carefully lit and displayed to accentuate their beauty and often combined with faceted and carved gem materials, one-of-a-kind objets d’art, and finished jewelry. For the visitor, this earth-to-jewel experience accentuates the jewelry industry’s rich history.

“We want to further an exchange of ideas between artists, scientists, curators, and collectors,” explained Rüdiger Pohl, who owns and curates the traveling gallery along with Alison Magovern. The gallery’s Tucson space has been open during the gem and mineral shows since 2013.

Pezzottaite dragon carving and crystal.
Figure 2. Pezzottaite is carved into a coiled dragon by Patrick Dreher. The pezzottaite crystal measures 9.6 × 4.7 × 2.1 cm, while the carved pezzottaite is 201.03 ct. Photo by Robert Weldon/GIA, courtesy of the Granada Gallery.
Aquamarine and gold bracelet alongside aquamarine crystal.
Figure 3. Left: Jochen Leën’s aquamarine and gold bracelet is displayed with a 6.1 × 9.1 × 8.5 cm (369.2 g) aquamarine crystal from Pakistan. Right: This 3436 g aquamarine from the Pohl collection measures 5.0 × 9.4 × 7.5 cm, and is also from Pakistan. Aside from its quartz overgrowth, the crystal exhibits phantom growth features and iridescence. Photos by Robert Weldon/GIA, courtesy of the Granada Gallery.

The Granada Gallery collaborates with global artists and collectors, “sparked by happy coincidences, shared visions, and the passion for creating something unique,” the owners said. This year’s exhibit included a collection of Paraíba-type tourmalines from Mozambique (figure 1) and a stunning dragon—carved from the rare mineral pezzottaite, found in a single deposit in Madagascar—by Patrick Dreher (figure 2). Pakistani aquamarine was on display in rough and mounted forms (figure 3). And a year-long collaboration with the Kreis family of Idar-Oberstein, Germany, resulted in their “Chanting of the Stars” piece (figure 4).

“Chanting of the Stars” is a Kreis family collaboration.
Figure 4. “Chanting of the Stars” was created by the Kreis family of Idar-Oberstein. The “chanting” refers to the sound of a comet entering the earth’s atmosphere. The rutilated quartz comet’s impact with earth is denoted by the smoky quartz carving. Photo by Robert Weldon/GIA, courtesy of the Granada Gallery.

Robert Weldon is director of the Richard T. Liddicoat Gemological Library and Information Center at GIA in Carlsbad, California.