The Beyond Rare™ Tender: A Sale of the World’s Most Rare Diamond Colors

Rio Tinto’s inaugural tender showcases the artistry of Mother Nature in the form of natural diamonds.

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Set of 6 GIA Fancy Vivid Purplish Pink and Purple-Pink Pears, 1.42cts

In the world of exquisite natural color diamonds, a new chapter unfolds as Rio Tinto presents its inaugural Beyond Rare Tender, known as The Art Series. This remarkable natural diamond sales event introduces connoisseurs and collectors to a collection of unparalleled beauty and rarity, showcasing the artistry of Mother Nature. The treasures within “Born of this World,” the first collection in the series, represent an awe-inspiring fusion of Argyle Diamonds™ from the famed mine in Western Australia’s East Kimberley and diamonds from Northern Canada’s Diavik Diamond Mine, hidden beneath a frozen lake. This prestigious collection, comprising 87 GIA-graded diamonds, features rare purples, pinks, and intense yellows, inviting an elite audience to embark on a journey of discovery.

Natural fancy color diamonds have held a certain mystique since their discovery 3000 years ago, captivating the imagination with their rare and unique hues. The origins of many of their exceptional shades are shrouded in mystery, with the Argyle Pink Diamonds™ offering an enigma as compelling as their vibrant pink and red hues. Recent research suggests that this phenomenon was ignited by the cataclysmic forces following the breakup of the Nuna supercontinent, shaping the geological wonders of Australia’s East Kimberley. Unlike their colorless counterparts, Argyle Pink Diamonds™ place color at the forefront of their grading, reflecting the rarity and intensity of their enchanting hues. As the Argyle Diamond Mine’s operations concluded in 2020, the world lost the source of 90% of all pink diamonds discovered in history. The importance of these diamonds, whether they are pink, red, or violet, cannot be emphasized enough. Their journey from the depths of Earth to the hearts of those who admire them is nothing short of extraordinary.

Patrick Coppens, General Manager of Sales and Marketing for Rio Tinto’s Diamonds business, said: “The market fundamentals that drive value appreciation for Argyle pink and red diamonds have never been stronger – a combination of severely constrained supply, with the closure of Argyle, and unwavering global demand for truly scarce gems.”

Another jewel in Rio Tinto’s crown, celebrating 20 years of operation, the Diavik Diamond Mine in Canada’s Barren Lands is an impressive testament to human ingenuity. With 1,100 inhabitants and the mine located 220 kilometers from the Arctic Circle, it is a place where diamonds lie beneath a frozen lake. The extraction of these diamonds requires incredible fortitude and innovative technology, exemplified by award-winning technology. A seasonal ice road, spanning frozen lakes and ponds for eight weeks a year serves as a vital artery for resupplying the Diavik community. Amongst the predominantly colorless gem-quality diamonds, the mine yields less than one percent of yellow diamonds, making them a true rarity in this pristine and challenging environment.

Rio Tinto’s Beyond™ Rare Tender: The Art Series will feature some of the most extraordinary and rare natural color diamonds these two locations have to offer. The collection of 48 lots of exceptional diamonds, with compositions of pink and red Argyle Diamonds™ and the brilliant yellows of Diavik, represents the masterpieces that nature has crafted over millions and billions of years. In total, there are 87 natural color diamonds with a total weight of 29.96 carats. 

  • One GIA* graded Fancy Red diamond
  • 60 GIA* graded Purplish Pink diamonds
  • Seven GIA* graded Pink diamonds
  • Five GIA* graded Purple-Pink diamonds
  • Two GIA* graded Orangy Pink diamonds
  • Two GIA* graded Fancy Intense Yellow diamonds, each greater than three carats in weight

The collection includes single polished diamonds, together with carefully matched pairs and curated diamond sets, the latter referred to as the ‘Masterpieces.’ Each of the seven ‘Masterpiece’ lots is accompanied by bespoke art created by Western Australian artist Sam Price, inspired by the surreal synchronization of earthly events that led to the birth of nature’s most exquisite works.

The Beyond Rare Tender is on a global tour, making stops in Perth, Sydney, Geneva, and Antwerp at invitation-only viewings, with sealed bids closing on November 20, 2023. The allure of Argyle Diamonds™ and the mystical depths of the Diavik Diamond Mine will no doubt be a match made in diamond heaven.