. Intarsia 403 | The Gem Shop, Inc.

Intarsia 403

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This polished intarsia artwork consists of a double layer of Moss Agate overlaying Turquoise with a double border and black backing. The cabochon is constructed from 12 individual pieces. 

The overlaying moss agate layers create additional depth in this intarsia piece, as both layers have moss that floats throughout the transparent agate, going further back or nearer in the space. With a turquoise sky in the background, dark brown trees and golden yellow brush sit on top of sloping ground. A second hill is in the distance, creating what could be a dusty, winding mountain path, or perhaps a rocky and windy beach. Even the ground provides dimension, with multiple shades of tan and mauve, and a brighter golden orange right below the foliage.

The initial Bruneau Jasper frame is a warm brown that almost extends the inner scene, like the blur around a photo, before reaching the final black outer frame. Backed with black basalt for a solid dark base and added strength, with an angled back bevel. 

Center: Moss Agate, Moss Agate, Turquoise, and Basalt

Border: Bruneau Jasper and Black Onyx

35mm x 40.5mm

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Intarsia: The Gem Shop’s founder, Eugene Mueller, has an MFA in painting and has won awards in the Cutting Edge Competition® for his intarsia, and has crafted and/ or designed many of the pieces available here. For thousands of years artisans have been using stone, striving to create the most beautiful scene possible. This process is commonly referred to as Intarsia. Intarsia traces its history back to the Italian Renaissance, and was called pietra dura or pietre dure. This is a term for the inlay technique of using thinly cut and polished stones to create images. The stonework is glued stone-by-stone to a substrate after having previously been sliced and cut in different shape sections; and then assembled together so precisely that the contact between each section is practically invisible. Intarsia items are generally crafted on green, white or black base stones. Traditionally Intarsia pieces have a flat polish, but more contemporary pieces are more freeform and have a dome polish, and are often referred to as “composite cabochons.” Intarsia is a high expression of lapidary art requiring a close mastery. Each piece is eccentric and highly collectible – a true work of art.

Learn more about Intarsia and its history, as well as Gene Mueller's work and artistry in the technique.