diamond was recently unveiled by
Laurence Graff in conversation with Vogue International Editor Suzy Menkes at the fifth Condé Nast International Luxury Conference at the Cape Town International Convention Centre.
The diamond was carved from the Lesedi La Rona (meaning “our light” in Tswana), a 1109 carat gem found in Botswana at the Lucara Karowe mine in 2015. It is acknowledged as the largest gem-quality rough diamond to be unearthed in over a century and is the second largest ever found.
It is also the highest clarity diamond ever graded by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), making it one of the greatest achievements in diamond history.
Using sophisticated technology and software, and a custom built scanner to probe deep within the rough diamond and map its natural imperfections, Graff’s team of experts and master craftsmen worked on the shaping of the Graff Lesedi La Rona for 18 months.
Additionally, a total of 66 “satellite” diamonds have also been produced from the original stone, ranging in size from under a carat to more than 26 carats. Graff, a London-based multinational, has cut and polished the majority of the 20 largest diamonds discovered in the world over the past 100 years.
The company has donated fragments of the Lesedi La Rona to the Smithsonian Institute, to help advance diamond research.