GEORG SCHMERHOLZ, of Somerset, California.

World Jade Symposium

lapidary arts


The first World Jade Symposium occurred in 2011, during a three month period, when forty-four artists from five countries participated. The United States had the most entrants, Canada and New Zealand about equal and one each from Mexico and China. Organized by myself, this event used only British Columbia nephrite. Jade in its two forms, nephrite and jadeite, has been used for tools and talismans and objects of ceremony in the past, by the many cultures that have developed in the areas where jade occurs: Alaska, Japan, Central America, New Zealand, Switzerland, Russia, and the oldest in China.

Each participant was handed or shipped a block of jade, the size of a big bar of soap. There were no restrictions and the gemstone artists were able to carve whatever they chose. For fairness, consistency and unity all the blocks were hewn from a single boulder of jade mined from Roger Krichbaum’s deposit in the Yukon Territories of Canada. This geological occurrence of jade is in such a remote location and altitude that it is accessible for only a couple of months during the summer, but Krichbaum selected prize stone for this event that became nicknamed Yukon snowflake. The jade was fairly tight grained, very translucent and a vivid green color. All these characteristics make for a very good quality jade and perfect carving stone.



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