Deeply Inspired by the Star Sapphire

December 2016 - Gübelin and Mirko Baselgia find inspiration in the inner world of a star sapphire

The star sapphire is our central theme for the holiday season at the Swiss family-owned House of Gübelin. Our season’s greeting cards as well as the festive holiday decorations in our boutiques are based on a microphotograph of the inner world of a star sapphire.

The photograph of the inner world of a star sapphire inspired the artist Mirko Baselgia to create his work “Reflecziuns”, which decorates this year’s Gübelin season’s greeting cards. It is a tradition for the House of Gübelin to work together with Swiss artists to create our holiday greeting cards. This year, we selected the Canton Grison artist Mirko Baselgia, who is known for his skill in conveying nature in his art.

Mirko Baselgia's work "Reflecziuns"

Star sapphire

Tiny needles of rutile within the sapphire create the characteristic star on the surface of the gem. This visual effect is known as asterism. Within the gem, the fascinating inclusions are reminiscent of sparkling fireworks.


Mirko Baselgia

In his work, the 34-year-old artist enters into a dialogue with nature itself. He observes natural and social processes, which he then addresses artistically in his transformations, thus creating new perspectives that allow us to see what had previously remained hidden from view.

For his work “Reflecziuns”, Mirko Baselgia chose a complicated printing process. Heliography is a high-end photographic printing process and is known as the predecessor to modern gravure printing. Arno Hassler employed this technique at the Atelier de gravure in Moutier. In addition, the card features a quote from the song poet Bibi Vaplan. Creating this season’s greetings card in co-operation with Swiss artists is a renewed expression of Gübelin’s commitment to art and culture.



Gübelin is a principal partner of the E.A.T. Engadin Art Talks 2017. The art and architecture forum, featuring prominent personalities, was created five years ago. It takes place on 28 and 29 January 2017 in Zuoz and this year’s theme will be “Snow and Desert / Schnee und Wüste”. To learn more, click here.


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