Fascinating Whims of Nature
Mankind has always been fascinated by petrified shapes of plants and creatures. For centuries such fossils were considered to be inexplicable ludi naturæ, Nature’s playful whims.
Leonardo da Vinci was the first, after the ancient Greeks, to recognize them as genuine remains of living organisms. Some spectacular finds confirmed this view. In Arizona and Patagonia, for example, people discovered entire petrified forests that must have come about many aeons ago.
After volcanic eruptions had buried the vegetation under a hail of hot ashes, or it had become flooded and covered in thick layers of sediment, a unique metamorphosis
took place in the wood that was thus encased.
In the course of a crystallization process that can take up to 360 million years, lime, phosphates, and other mineral salts penetrate the wood from the surrounding strata. They gradually replace the wood, but – fascinatingly – some of the natural structures remain.
In a silica-rich environment, the petrified wood can develop into a preliminary stage of the semi-precious stones chalcedony and agate. The Pen of the Year 2007 shows up the aesthetic qualities of this gemstone in a unique way.
Brilliant as a Gemstone
Petrified wood as the material for a fountain pen is an unusual twist to the use of valuable woods in the Graf von Faber-Castell Collection.
And it requires pieces of unusual quality. The only ones that fulfil the requirements are deciduous wood from Brazil. Select stocks of this petrified wood are hard enough to give a top-quality gemstone finish. The individual hues vary from shades of light brown via elegant anthracite grey to deep black where the grain is almost invisible.
Select stocks of this petrified wood are hard enough to give a top-quality gemstone finish. The individual hues vary from shades of light brown via elegant anthracite grey to deep black where the grain is almost invisible.
Each Pen of the Year becomes a unique work of art: its intense but discrete sparkle never ceases to impress.
Crafted by the Masters
The greatest challenge in producing this Pen of the Year was shaping the stones precisely to the ideal form for the purpose.
This can be achieved only by precision cuts that take the jeweller’s art to the utmost. It requires the sensitive touch of an experienced cutter to ensure that the unique nuances of the stone come to the fore, all the way from the rough cut to the final polish.
The Herbert Stephan gemstone manufactury is predestined for this demanding task. It carries on the great tradition of the Idar Oberstein gemstone workshops, founded in the 15th century and of world renown.
A Unity of Contrasts
The Pen of the Year 2007 is a writing implement and a piece of jewellery in one.
The platinized frame encases each individual stone and shows off its unmistakable brilliance to best effect. Thanks to the virtuoso precision cut, not the slightest unevenness can be detected at the transitions between the metal and the stones.
It is fascinating to see and feel how two so different materials complement each other so harmoniously. The pattern and colouring give each pen its individual character.
Writing with Flair
One just has to pick up the Pen of the Year 2007, and already one senses the excitement of writing with such a gem of a pen.
It combines brilliant looks, an extremely effective and inimitable feel, and excellent writing characteristics.
The little plate at the end cap of the barrel is the crowning glory of this masterpiece, with an artistic gemstone cut. Facetted with great precision, polished to a gleaming finish, and with the logo of the Herbert Stephan gemstone manufactury on the inside: this represents the craftsman’s art in its highest form.