Architecturally biased jewellery

Architecturally biased jewellery

Joanne Piper,  Belinda Koopman and Catherine Buman were chosen in 2009 as the finalists in the Pearl Essence International Jewellery Design Competition.  The competition was open to final year students from colleges that offered a minimum two year full-time jewellery design course.

There were eleven finalists in total out of 644 entries from all over the Asia Pacific region.  The students designs will be made into finished pieces and they will travel to Dubai for a Gala Award Ceremony in early 2010 – we congratulate them and wish them good luck at the Award ceremony!

The student entries were judged by an international jury, chaired by DMCC and comprising trade journalists and professional jewellery designers. The designs were evaluated for commercial design, wearability, theme-based creativity and the use of pearls as the main design feature.

Some of Belinda’s other designs are featured here  – 

“These creations needed no D.A or C.C, no client input, no environmental impact statement, geotechnical report etc etc etc. Just bliss.”



Some of the world’s leading luxury jewellery designers and regional jewellery design students have received exclusive invitations from Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC), namely the Dubai government, to take part in the inaugural ‘Pearl Essence’ – the Dubai International Pearl Jewellery Design Programme. A world first in global design for pearl jewellery, the programme incorporates different categories of pearls, including Tahitian, South Sea, Akoya and Freshwater.

Pearl Essence is a very exciting initiative. It pays fitting tribute to the gem of Arabia, while at the same time bringing together the international pearl community in a unique manner. Through Pearl Essence, we aim to enhance awareness and appreciation of the beauty of this gem, drawing on the artistic finesse of luxury jewellery designers as well as the budding talent in the industry.

Further to the ten winning designs, spanning a cross-section of countries, there is an additional Jury’s choice award that will be manufactured by Jorg Gellner*. ( won by Catherine Buman )

Highlighting the significance of the programme, the remaining designs will be produced by leading pearl manufacturers including ARY Jewelers, Damas, Dhamani, Hof & Co, Liali Jewellery, Mahallati Jewellery, Mikura Pearls, Pinctada, Taiba and Universal Pearls (Umi Pearls).

Pearls for the pieces will be provided by the pearl sponsors – Paspaley Pearling Co., Robert Wan Tahiti and Euro Pearls. Christie’s has lent its support as Auctioneer and Brinks as Traveling Exhibition Partner for later milestones of the programme.

Pearl Essence is a two-tier programme incorporating both leading professional designers and students of jewellery design. The invitation-only professional designer tier constitutes finished pearl jewellery submitted by the top professional pearl jewellery brands of the moment while the student design tier is an open competition for final year students from schools that offer a minimum two-year full time jewellery design course.

PEARL ESSENCE Student Finalists 

Belinda Koopman / Enmore Design Centre / Australia / Combination

Joanne Piper / Enmore Design Centre / Australia / Combination

Yuki Shizuno / Hiko Mizund College Of Jewellery / Japan / South Sea

Feng Feng / Raffles Design Institute Singapore / Singapore / South Sea

Reinhardt Van Zyl / Tshwane University Of Technology / South Africa / Fresh Water

Dao Ying / School Of Art And Design Tsinghua University / China / Fresh Water

Asako Oshima / Japan Jewelry Craft School / Japan  / Akoya

Yang Xing / Vacation School In China Academy Of Art / China / Akoya

Catherine Buman / Enmore Design Centre / Australia / Akoya

Ho Cheuk Fung / Hong Kong Institute Of Vocational Education / Hong Kong / Tahitian

Hong Wangke / Vocational School In China Academy Of Art / China  / Tahitian

Share your thoughts