By Zahra Al-Kateb
Contemporary fine jewelry artist Cindy Chao, well known for her intricate designs featuring rare and colorful gemstones, has collaborated with actress, entrepreneur and philanthropist Sarah Jessica Parker. Together they have created the 2014 Black Label Masterpiece “Ballerina Butterfly brooch”.
The brooch, estimated to be in the region of $750,000 – $950,000, will be auctioned at Sotheby’s Hong Kong Magnificent Jewels and Jadeite Sale on 7 October. Net proceeds from its sale will benefit the New York City Ballet.
Parker and Chao first came to admire each other’s respective works at Chao’s 2011 Masterpiece Exhibition in Beijing, with heir friendship and mutual respect leading to this collaboration. Over two years the two worked together to design a unique piece of jewelry for charity. This two year period saw them review sketches, wax models and gemstones together. The “Ballerina Brooch” melds together Chao’s craftsmanship as one of the jewelry world’s premier artists along with Parker’s discerning eye for style and design.
This resulted in a brooch containing titanium and an 18-karat gold body, featuring a cushion-cut fancy brown diamond weighing 26.27 carats, three rough brown diamonds slices weighing 47.71 carats, three pieces of conch pearls weighing 7.25 carats, surrounded by 4,698 diamonds and fancy colored diamonds weighing 98.09 carats in total.
Chao said: “Sarah Jessica and I are two very different creative minds sharing the same artistic vision and passion. She truly appreciates the essence and soul of my creations, and I admire her innovative yet classic view on fashion and style. My annual Butterflies carry special meaning for me. Collaborating with Sarah Jessica for a cause we both deeply care for and believe in makes this Ballerina Butterfly all the more special in my heart.”
This year marks the tenth anniversary of CINDY CHAO The Art Jewel, lending great personal meaning to the Black Label Masterpiece Butterfly.
“I have had the great pleasure of knowing Cindy and her work for several years, and it has been an incredibly special experience to collaborate with her,” states Parker. “Cindy’s jewelry designs are true works of art; they capture the eye and imagination in a memorable way. I am so pleased to partner with her on this project, which benefits the wonderful work of the New York City Ballet, an organization that is close to my heart.”
“New York City Ballet is honored to be a part of this wonderful collaboration between Sarah Jessica Parker and Cindy Chao,” said NYCB’s Executive Director Katherine Brown. “As a member of our Board of Directors, Sarah Jessica has created a number of exciting initiatives to both build new audiences and generate philanthropic support. We are thrilled that she and Cindy have chosen to make NYCB the inspiration for and benefactor of the sale of this exquisite “Ballerina Butterfly” brooch.
The “Ballerina Butterfly” brooch made its debut during Haute Couture week in Paris, July 7-10. It will travel throughout Asia before going to New York, where Chao and Parker will serve as Co-Chairs of the New York City Ballet’s Fall Gala on September 23, 2014. The brooch will then return to Hong Kong in October, prior to the auction.