Destinations

Live from Tucson, Ariz.: A Trio of Bill Gangi’s Biggest AGTA GemFair Tucson Sellers

Tucson, Ariz. Feb. 6, 2020. Longtime gem miner, cutter, and dealer Bill Gangi, of Gangi Gems, is (not surprisingly) having another gangbuster show at the American Gem Trade Association GemFair Tucson. Gangi, from Franklin, N.Y., routinely brings some of the most uncommon gem and mineral materials to shows, which is why he has such a devoted following (including yours truly). This year’s inventory includes a trio of relatively low-cost specimens that can help create big looks for a small investment.

For starters, Gangi cut up agatized dinosaur bone that had been sitting in his safe for 40 years. Once he dug in, he realized that some of the material was actually transparent chalcedony in the cell structure, making some of the rocks “look like a fishnet stocking” under light.

“The matrix around the cells is usually black, but we found some that was red and yellow,” he says. “We have some of the rarest colors this year.”

Further enhancing the dino display of freeform cabochons, calibrated shapes, and matched pairs are a tower of genuine dinosaur eggs, courtesy of a collector friend. The dino material, which has no treatment, was found in Moab, Utah, is upwards of 120 million years old, and has a triple keystone price of $6 per carat.

Next, Gangi has Gibeon meteorite fragments that have been forged, milled, rolled, and etched. This lot of largely funky sword-like silhouettes—some bent, some thin enough to serve as bezels—was acquired from a longtime buyer of Gangi’s larger samples. A well-known men’s jewelry maker who has been working with Gibeon meteorite for 20-plus years sold the dealer his scrap on request. Gangi’s idea: make the funky shapes available for resale. All the inventory is originally from Namibia, has been acid-etched to highlight the Widmanstätten lines—unique patterns that occur in iron meteorites—and has been forged by heavy-duty equipment from the auto industry. “We even have matched pairs,” says Gangi proudly.

Pieces are available for $12 a gram triple keystone.

Finally, Gangi recently purchased 126 pounds of watermelon tourmaline rough. The tourmaline is surrounded by feldspar and quartz and is sourced from northern Brazil. “It is stabilized because it’s too included to facet into fine gems, but it’s the color and patterns that everyone loves,” he says.

Finished pieces for sale include low-dome cabochons and cushion shapes. Originally, Gangi thought he would have it all cut in time for the show, but reality interfered with his ambition. He has sold much of what he brought—several thousand carats—with only several hundred remaining. On his bench at home? Some 400 hundred pieces that will yield hundreds of pairs.

The triple keystone price per gram is $6.

Gibeon meteorite fragments that have been forged, milled, rolled, and etched are $12 a gram triple keystone; email bill@gangigems.com for purchase.

Dinosaur freeform cabochons, calibrated shapes, and matched pairs are $6 per carat triple keystone; email bill@gangigems.com for purchase.

Gibeon meteorite fragments that have been forged, milled, rolled, and etched are $12 a gram triple keystone; email bill@gangigems.com for purchase.

Gibeon meteorite fragments that have been forged, milled, rolled, and etched are $12 a gram triple keystone; email bill@gangigems.com for purchase.

Watermelon tourmaline low-dome cabochons and cushion shapes are $6 per gram triple keystone; email bill@gangigems.com for purchase.

Watermelon tourmaline low-dome cabochons and cushion shapes are $6 per gram triple keystone; email bill@gangigems.com for purchase.

Drop earrings in 14k yellow gold with purple garnets and diamonds, $1,300 at K.Jon’s

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