Vanadinite, Mibladen, Morocco
description: 6" ac. Acquired from Stuart Wilensky in March 2012. It is a wonderful group of razor sharp, blood red, pristine vanadinite crystals up to 1" in diameter. Another pleasing trait of this piece is the high three dimensional relief of the crystals in relation to each other and the fact that they cover most of an almost "pyramid shaped" matrix which is covered by black, limonite coated bladed crystals of barite. The contrast between the glassy lustered crystals of fire engine red vanadinite on earthy lustered, black, bladed barite is stark, striking and beautiful. These esthetic attributes contribute to this pictured piece being in the upper echelon of Moroccan vanadinite. Although this species also occurs in Arizona, Mexico and even Broken Hill, New South Wales, Australia, examples of vanadinite from these localities do not even come near the illustrated piece. It was mined recently. Although trickles of fine Mibladen vanadinite specimens appear on the market every few years, the small lots of specimens that do make brief appearances at shows or lots offered "under the table" are quickly "swallowed" by the collector market. This is especially so since this vivid red mineral species is one of the most attractive and appreciated by collectors. Demand for it will always exceed the relatively sparse supply even if production continues at its present rate indefinitely.
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