Jewellery has played an important role in the adornment of people of all cultures, and in all civilizations. The annual show at Altfield Gallery in March, with Susan Ollemans, a jewellery dealer from London is a good example of this.

Fine old jewels from India, China and South East Asia will be exhibited - showing the contrasts and the connections between the various cultures and their highly skilled goldsmiths.

From North India, there will be fine examples of Mughal jewellery inset with precious gemstones. Such examples are the beautiful Mughal Navaratna necklace from early 18th century Hyderabad and finely enamelled gold and diamond bangles from 18th century Lucknow, with the unique Kundan technique with flat-cut diamonds and mounted with Basra pearls showing the fine craftsmanship of the imperial workshops.

South India is famous for the goldsmiths of the Tamil Nadu area who produced marvelous dowry jewels in gold. Example is a ruby and gold MangoMalai necklace made from single mango pods each inset with a single cabochon ruby. These were made as symbols of fertility and often formed part of the marriage ensemble.

The Chinese pieces include a pair of gold double gourd earrings from the Ming Dynasty, as well as finely worked jade and gemstone inset jewels from Qing dynasty. They are exquisitely crafted examples utilizing a variety of gold metal working techniques that include filigree, soldering, cut, chased and repousse work.

Early gold pieces from South East Asia including Burma, Cambodia, Vietnam, Indonesia, Java and Bali dating from the 3rd century through to the 19th century are all represented in the show, and reflect the status, geographical and religious diversity of the people for whom they were made.