Lapidary Art

Lapidary art consists of shaping and cutting gemstones in order to reveal their natural beauty.

Lapidary artists possess in-depth knowledge of the chemical and physical properties specific to each gemstone family and are able to use various transformation techniques in order to preserve a maximum weight while at the same time highlighting the brilliance and colours of each gemstone.

For each technique covered, students will learn to recognize the physical and chemical properties of different materials in order to transform their rough stones in the best possible way.

The ultimate goal of this program is to enable each student to become autonomous and equipped with the necessary knowledge to evaluate and anticipate how gemstone materials will react in order to advise future clients.

By the end of the program, students will have acquired an understanding of various transformation techniques: multi-form stone cutting, faceting, sculpture, engraving, and assembling, as well as the complete polishing process.

After completing the Lapidary Art program at the École de joaillerie de Montréal, students will receive a diploma that is well recognized within the jewellery industry.

** In the situation of abandon, reimbursement conditions apply. Please see the Registration section.

OUR LAPIDARY ART INSTRUCTORS

YVES ST-PIERRE

Yves Saint-Pierre began his training in 1975 at the École de joaillerie et de métaux d’art de Montréal, and apprenticed stone cutting and polishing with Daniel Ungerson. His work includes a number of lamps, sculptures and ornaments created with his hand cut stones. He is now one of the very few lapidary artists in Quebec. He teaches at the École de joaillerie de Montréal since 1994 and has taken part in numerous exhibitions throughout Canada and abroad.

CHRISTIANE MORIN

An enthusiastic collector for over 30 years, Christiane has been acquiring, through the course of her travels, gemstones from all around the world. Noticing the poor quality of their cut, she began learning lapidary art with Yves St-Pierre and benefited from the wise advice of the late Stephen Kotlowski, master lapidary. For more than ten years now, she has been cutting stones professionally for her international clientele and renowned private collections.

COURSES

Length Course Objectives Cost Cost of materials
21 h Lapidary Art, level 1
with Yves St-Pierre
Students will be introduced to the techniques of cutting and polishing stones into flat and domed cabochons. All students will learn to shape opaque gems to reveal their ornamental features, using the water wheel and diamond saw in a safe manner. $ 295 ± $ 30

Prerequisites: None

Length Course Objectives Cost Cost of materials
21 h Lapidary Art, level 2
with Yves St-Pierre
In this course, students will get a deeper understanding of basic lapidary techniques and will work with the various structures of translucent and semi-opaque gems, such as cleavage planes and colour zones. They will be introduced to freehand faceting and drilling. $ 295 ± $ 30

Prerequisites: Lapidary Art, level 1

Length Course Objectives Cost Cost of materials
7 h Lapidary Art: Assembling
with Yves St-Pierre
Introduction to the process of making doublets and assembling gemstones. In addition, the marquetry of stones will be approached. $ 125 ± $ 30

Prerequisites: Lapidary Art, level 1

Length Course Objectives Cost Cost of materials
7 h Marquetry
with Yves St-Pierre
In this workshop, students will learn about marquetry joining techniques. It differs from mosaic techniques in the precision cutting of the pieces which are joined together perfectly. Various adhesives and their respective properties will be presented. $ 125 ± $ 30

Prerequisites: Lapidary Art, level 1

Length Course Objectives Cost Cost of materials
7 h Engraving and small carvings
with Yves St-Pierre
Students will learn basic engraving and carving techniques using diamond bits and will learn to choose the appropriate tool for the desired result, while following the many steps required in order to obtain a well-finished piece. $ 150 To be determined

Prerequisites: Lapidary Art, level 1

Length Course Objectives Cost Cost of materials
14 h Tool Making
with Yves St-Pierre
In this workshop, students will make their own abrasive resin bands for polishing and their own metal and resin tools for sculpting and engraving. They will be introduced to the various materials needed for tool making and to the actual making process. Students will also get to experiment with Bronze Clay. $ 205 ± $ 25

Prerequisites: Lapidary Art, level 1

Length Course Objectives Cost Cost
21 h Faceting, level 1
with Christiane Morin
Once familiarised with the faceting machine and its components, students will learn the specific terminology used to describe the parts of a cut stone. They will also be introduced to faceting and polishing techniques. $ 375 ± $ 45

Prerequisites: None

Length Course Objectives Cost Cost of materials
21 h Faceting, level 2
with Christiane Morin
Several notions will be covered in this workshop: refractive index, critical angle, and the behaviour of light in minerals and gems. Students will go deeper in their mastery of faceting in order to maximise the stone’s colour and brilliance. Students will also learn how to maintain a faceting machine. $ 375 ± $ 45

Prerequisites: Faceting, level 1

Length Course Objectives Cost Cost of materials
14 h Re-cutting and restoration
with Christiane Morin
To maximise the beauty of a gemstone it is sometimes necessary to consider re-cutting or restoring it. In this workshop participants will learn how to evaluate the angles of the pavilion and crown, how to choose the type of design according to the stone and how to close a window. The principle of repairing a chip on the crown or table will be discussed. $ 275 ± $ 50

Prerequisites: Faceting, level 2

Length Course Objectives Cost Cost of materials
7 h Purchasing raw material and gems for re-cutting
with Christiane Morin
Theoretical course to help students make the right choice when buying a rough stone or a faceted stone that would benefit from being re-cut. By means of exercises, the students will observe a few stones and will be able to better distinguish the possibilities of cutting or re-cutting. $ 125

Prerequisites: To have followed the faceting workshop or to be a qualified gemmologist or to be in the process of becoming one. 

WE RESERVE THE RIGHT TO CANCEL ANY COURSE
WHICH DOESN’T REACH THE MINIMUM NUMBER OF PARTICIPANTS, ONE WEEK IN ADVANCE.
MATERIAL COSTS MAY VARY ACCORDING TO THE CURRENT PRICE OF METAL.

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