Lehrer's Liquid Light: The Matrix Cut

| 6 min read

We have been fortunate enough to work with the inimitable Glenn Lehrer and enjoy the unparalleled beauty of his creations for over ten years now. We were recently delighted to showcase Glenn’s unparalleled skill with the exquisite display of liquid light in his new Matrix Cut collection.

It’s worth taking a moment to appreciate how Glenn’s journey as a gemstone artist began. It all started in a moment every bit as incredible as the creations that followed. Glenn tells us, “I’m one of the old guys now! I started my career in 1976 after I had travelled around the world. When I came back to America, my brother handed me a cut Quartz crystal. I was not in the jewellery business, had no knowledge or science background with gems, but I was an artist. My brother handed me this cut Quartz crystal, and it was like lightning bolts going off inside my head.”

Gemstone Artist Glenn Lehrer

“I was so enamoured and intrigued by this cut piece of Quartz crystal back in 1976 that I felt like I had to go out and figure out how to do this - I wanted to be able to carve gem material. There were no teachers in America so essentially, for the first ten years, I was self-taught, and having an artistic background lent itself very well to the process. Not having come from the gem world, I approached gem carving in a very untraditional and unique way.” In his nine-plus years of bringing his exquisite creations to Gemporia viewers, we’ve been fortunate enough to see just how Glenn’s exceptional approach to gem carving has allowed him to create genuinely unique wonders. Anybody who has read Glenn’s autobiography ‘In Quest of the Indescribable’ will have seen stunning pictures of Glenn’s couture pieces, as well as the myriad magazine covers on which they have featured over the years. For us at Gemporia, it all started with Glenn’s TorusRing cut which he first brought to our screens in 2011. In the intervening years, Glenn has shared with us the unmatched majesty of his QuasarCut, KaleidosCut, Flame, Man in the Moon, Cosmic Obelisk and Infinity creations too, not to mention his meticulous Bahia collection. “On Gemporia, I’m motivated every year to come up with something new. It’s always pushing me to new limits, in the diversity of carving that I do. In that respect, it’s been rather extraordinary and unique in doing this kind of work, and I’m always excited about bringing new gemstones and new ideas to Gemporia - like the Matrix cut.”

Glenn Lehrer's Matrix Cut

Glenn’s pieces are always in limited supply, by nature of the fact they’re so difficult to create and that the rough gemstones of high enough quality are so hard to come by. The largest number of pieces made in any one style for the Matrix launch show was just 25. “These pieces are so unique, and they take so much more time to produce than traditionally faceted stones, that we didn’t want to flood the market. We decided we were going to create limited-edition collections, so these pieces are numbered and signed with my hallmark on the metalwork as you would expect on a limited edition print. Once every piece in each style is sold, we will never repeat that same combination of design, metalwork and gemstone.”

The Matrix cut designs are some of the largest carat weight pieces Glenn has ever created for Gemporia, and the gemstones used are of such dazzling, world-class clarity. Viewing one is sure to quicken the pulse not only the first time it is viewed but on every subsequent viewing too. They are truly beyond compare. So how did Glenn achieve these remarkable shards of gemstone art and the incredible play of liquid light that shines through each masterpiece? “Well, you’ll notice immediately that there’s no traditional table facet - it is a crown that starts at the girdle’s edges, which are the outer edges of the stone, and then steps up to a centre point down the middle of the gem. What the crown does is it reflects and refracts light, so it splits the light up as you can see when you look into this cut.”

Lehrer Matrix Jewellery Designs from Gemporia

“That’s the first thing you’ll notice that’s very different; you’ll see it doming up to the top and back down again. That’s done very purposefully, because of what’s going on on the underside, which is the hidden aspect that I try to include in a lot of my work. If you look very closely at the underside, down along the girdle to the culet, you’re going to see a line of V-shaped cuts, going into the gem from underneath. Look closely, and you’ll see how they reverse with each other, with one coming from one side of the gem, and then the next coming from the other side. They keep alternating in this fashion right along the bottom of the gemstone. This creates a very non-traditional zig-zag culet, but it’s all for a reason of course. So when we now look at the top side of the gem and view the stone from above, each of these carefully placed V-cuts is reflecting on opposite sides of the gem, so you’re getting multiple reflections from each cut. These V-cuts are placed at a very precisely critical angle of refraction and are also within those reflective side facets. They don’t window out; they are carefully placed within those reflective side faces.”

Lehrer Matrix Jewellery Designs from Gemporia

All of this ingenuity adds up to a cascading waterfall of sparkle, a placement of facets that interact with each other with mind-boggling precision to create a finished jewel that looks like no other. “The combination of the underside along with the step cut crown takes the light and, for want of a better phrase, it slices and dices it! It takes the light coming through the top of the gem and breaks it up and bounces it around the gem in a truly unique way.” And the name Matrix? Well, the way the light appears to cascade down the stone reminds Glenn of the cascading computer code from the 1999 Keanu Reeves movie of the same name, and the merging of this digital and physical energy in this fashion inspired the name Matrix. “It’s really, truly one of the most unique cuts that I’ve ever done.”


Our Most Popular Blog Posts

Our Latest Blog Posts