The Antwerp diamond sector presented ‘t Steentje on Tuesday. The industry made this diamond to celebrate the hundredth anniversary of the brilliant shape. To make the brilliant tangible, 57 ordinary and well-known Antwerp people helped polish just as many facets of the gemstone.
Antwerp engineer Marcel Tolkowsky discovered the brilliant. He discovered that a diamond with 57 facets would reflect as much light as possible and would therefore shine the most. “To this day it remains the most iconic and the most successful cut,” says Ari Epstein, CEO of the Antwerp World Diamond Centre.
To celebrate the hundredth anniversary of the brilliant, AWDC brought a diamond to the people of Antwerp. Famous and lesser-known ‘sinjoren’ (the nickname for Antwerpians) each helped cut one facet of the stone. Among others Suske en Wiske, Jean-Marie Pfaff, chocolatier Anne Seutin from DelRey, brewer Sven Dekleermaeker from De Koninck, governor Cathy Berx, Eva Olde Monnikhof, the director of diamond museum Diva, but also singer Natalia, boxer Delfine Persoon, some Antwerp soccer players and mayor Bart De Wever.
It now shines in the Antwerp diamond museum
Master polisher Pieter Bombeke assisted and coached all those people. He further finished ‘t Steentje to a brilliant 1.6 carat, which shines in the diamond museum. “Yes, I thought it was an honor that they asked me for this job, especially because in the past I often dared to tackle other cuts than the brilliant. I already made diamonds with 43, 63 and 67 facets. At the same time, I am experiencing an important moment in the history of our industry. I won’t live to see such another birthday“, Bombeke laughs.
“And I was able to experience unique moments with the 57 cutters. All too often, my world takes place between the four walls of my workshop. So I’m always happy when I can broaden my field of vision,” concludes the master polisher