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$2000 Christine Roussel Award for best carving

Monday, 23rd May, 2011

In honour of the late Christine Roussel’s inspiring contribution to the opal industry and the craft of opal carving, Michelle and Danny Hatcher are sponsoring a $2000 cash prize for a new award in the International Opal Jewellery Designs Awards Association (IOJDAA)  known as the ‘Christine Roussel Award’.

The Christine Roussel Award will be nominated by the IOJDAA judges. The award will be for the best overall carved piece which can be figurative, abstract, a loose carving or one set in jewellery. The only criteria is that the opal must have an undulated surface.

Michelle and Danny have generously committed to sponsoring this award for future IOJDAA’s. Each year’s winner will be engraved into a perpetual plaque creating an honour roll. When asked what inspired the award, Michelle said, “we wanted to create something that honoured her dedication to the industry and inspired others to continuing levels of creativity and excellence in opal carving.” 

Without a doubt, Christine was instrumental in putting opal carving on the map. Her two decades of experience combined with her passion for opals have seen her work with master jewellers and opal wholesalers to bring to life spectacular pieces. ”Christine had an intimate understanding of opals. She approached each piece with careful consideration to create striking carvings. But above all Christine was an incredibly kind and selfless person who gave her time and expertise to anyone that wanted to learn about opal carving,” Michelle said.

Since 2005, Christine tutored students in opal carving from Lightning Ridge Central School.  She understood that the industry would only continue to thrive if her skills and knowledge were passed on to the next generation. She also actively contributed to the community and the industry in so many other ways. She was on the Opal Advisory Board for over twenty years, the IOJDAA committee for eight years and the Lightning Ridge Swimming Pool Committee for twenty three years.

Christine’s skill as an opal carver has had her receive international recognition in the IOJDAA Awards with consecutive first place awards for both figurative and abstract professional carvings. She consistently raised the bar at each IOJDAA competition with her visionary pieces and beautiful craftsmanship, yet she always remained extremely humble with her accomplishments.

“We believe the Christine Roussel Award will be aspirational to our entrants when designing pieces. It crystallises the purpose of the IOJDAA Awards which is to create innovative freeform and undulating opal pieces,” said Lyn Carney, President of International Opal Jewellery Design Awards Association.

Media Enquiries

Contact: Lyn Carney - President of International Opal Jewellery Design Awards Association
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