Important Note: The author: Vincent Pardieu is an employee of GIA (Gemological Institute of America) Laboratory Bangkok since Dec 2008. Any views expressed on this website - and in particular any views expressed by Vincent Pardieu - are the authors' opinions and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of GIA or GIA Laboratory Bangkok . GIA takes no responsibility and assumes no liability for any content on this website nor is GIA liable for any mistakes or omissions you may encounter. GIA is in particular not screening, editing or monitoring the content on this website and has no possibility to remove, screen or edit any content.
We are gemologists (gemmologists) sharing a passion for gemstones, gemolology (gemmology), gem people and traveling.
You will find in this website gemological expedition reports and some studies of gemological interest.
Visiting many gem mining areas we saw that people in remote mining and trading areas have difficulties to access to gemological publications. As today the Internet can be accessed in most of these gem mining areas and trading centers, the author started to build this website to give gem people living there the opportunity to see the result of the gemological expeditions they were associated in. It is a way to thanks them for their time and collaboration and to help them to get access to more gemological information.
At the same time the author hope that these expedition reports will please the people from consuming countries interested in gemstones and fascinated by their mysterious origins. Our purpose here is to help people facing difficulties to get quality first hand information about gems and their origins to get the information they need through this website and its links.
With our field expeditions to gemstone mines and gem markets around the world, we intend also here to share our passion for photography, gems and our fascination for the work of the "Gem People" bringing gemstones from the ground to magnificent jewelry.
From the gems external beauty to the intimate beauty of gemstone inclusions, from gem lore to the mines, the people and the landscapes gems origin from, we expect to share with you our passion for gemstone beauty.
We also invite you to join us on some gemological forums we are active in as they are convenient tools to get rapid answers to your questions as they are regularly visited by many other passionate gemologists, jewelers, hobbyists and professionals willing to learn more and share their knowledge about gemstones.
Index page: Vincent Pardieu's Blog
About the Author
About me : How did a countryside Frenchman became a "Shameless travel addicted gemologist"? ( Under construction)
Sep. 2005: Madagascar with Richard W. Hughes and Dana Schorr (Will be available one of these days...)
Summer 2005: Gemological expeditions to South East Asia (Vietnam) South Asia (Sri Lanka) and East Africa (Kenya, Madagascar and Tanzania) with J.B. Senoble and Tanguy Lagache with the support of the AIGS, the ICA and the Gubelin Gem Lab:
- Introduction to AIGS/ICA/Gubelin Gem lab 2005 Expeditions
Special THANKS for their support for our field expeditions since 2005:
about gems, gemology, field expeditions, studying gemology, minerals, jade, pearls or jewelry? We recommend these FORUMS where the author is contributing:
Do you want to STUDY GEMOLOGY?
Here are some recommended institutes where the author studied gemology in Thailand ... and was happy about his investment!
For those willing to go further after their gemological studies: Recommended Advanced Gemological Courses:
To finish here are some BOOKS about gemology the author have read and appreciated and would like to recommend to people willing to learn more about gemstones, gemology and the places where gemstones are found:
A visit to the Orient Pearl cultured South Sea pearl farm in Mergui, Burma (Myanmar): (Dec. 08 to Dec.13, 2007):
Abstract of the complete report available on fieldgemology.org : This report presents the field trip Vincent Pardieu and Christian Dunaigre, then gemologists at the Gubelin Gem Lab, Lucerne Switzerland, had with Kham Vannaxay (Sofragem, Bangkok, Thailand) to the Myanmar Orient Pearl Co Ltd south sea pearl farming operation in the Mergui archipelago from Dec 08 to Dec 13, 2007.
1) Introduction: A rapid presentation of the Mergui archipelago, its importance for the cultured pearl industry and a presentation of some key people I want to give some very special thanks to have helped us to visit Mergui.
2 ) From Mergui to Ravenshaw island, a cruise through the Mergui archipelago: From Mergui harbor we had a 10 hours cruise on the Mergui archipelago, a remote and difficult to access tropical archipelago located in the south of Burma on the Andaman sea. It was a wonderful visit of one of the last archipelago still out of range of any tourism industry. We passed numerous beautiful Burmese fishing villages with their wooden houses and golden stupas, passed the remote "marble islands" where bird nests are collected. Sailing in the archipelago from one pearl farm to another gave us also the chance to meet the sea gypsies of Mergui: The Salon people living a nomadic life of their small boats.
3 ) A visit to the Orient Pearl Co Ltd pearl farm around Ravenshaw island.
Formerly known as "Myanmar Ocean Pearl Co Ltd" the "Myanmar Orient Pearl Co Ltd" is a private company which is working at Ravenshaw island since 1993. Its owner, U Myint Lwin was first involved in fishing before to become one of the main pearl producer in Mergui. "Myanmar Orient Pearl Co Ltd" was presented to us as the second most important pearl farm in Mergui after Tasaki, a Japanese company and Myanmar Pearl Enterprises, the Burmese state owned company. In 1999 Kham Vannaxay visited already the operation with Ted Themelis. A report was published later by Ted Themelis. It was interesting to see that pearl farming in Mergui changed dramatically since that visit,
"The pearl and the man " A Burmese man from Mergui present proudly his Mergui pearl ring. Who said that pearls are just for women? Photo: V. Pardieu, 2007
This expedition to Mergui was a great experience for Christian Dunaigre and myself as we were dreaming to visit the Mergui archipelago pearl farms for many years. We were not disappointed. We have spend in Mergui some exceptional moments with wonderful people. We were able to literally dive in the world of cultured pearls and discover some of its fascinating secrets.
I would like to thanks particularly for his precious help Kham Vannaxay from Sofragem in Bangkok to have organized this expedition and have invited Christian and myself to come with him. Finally I would like to thanks U Myint Lwin to have received us in his farm. I would like also to thanks U Tin Nge to have been such a great guide in the archipelago. Thanks to you guys, an old dream became true.
Important Note: Vincent Pardieu is an employee of GIA (Gemological Institute of America) Laboratory Bangkok since Dec 2008. Any views expressed on this website - and in particular any views expressed by Vincent Pardieu - are the authors' opinions and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of GIA or GIA Laboratory Bangkok. GIA takes no responsibility and assumes no liability for any content on this website nor is GIA liable for any mistakes or omissions you may encounter. GIA is in particular not screening, editing or monitoring the content on this website and has no possibility to remove, screen or edit any content.