Contending dragons facing each other are the "yin" and "yang" of our world. Rooted in ancient Chinese philosophy, they symbolize the concept of dualism, of opposite forces that may seem contrary, but are at times complementary and interdependent. Night and day, sun and moon, winter and summer, man and woman, positive and negative . . . these are all examples of these dueling forces. Usually, we see the yin yang concept as an icon, a dot with equal swirls of black and white colors.
This Kenneth Jay Lane jewelry depiction of the yin yang dragons blows everything else out of the water. This humongous bib necklace showcases twin intertwined dragons in opposing colors, gold and silver, with a pair of "lucky" coins between them.
Our dragon necklace dates to the 1970s and bears the designer's second oldest known logo. It is a very rare design. I've only seen it once, in a book, about 20 years ago. I am truly awestruck, seeing this finally in person. Also, I'm amazed that it's such in excellent condition, with such rich golden and silver hues.
Each dragon is depicted the Asian way, sinewy and snake like; each is a mirror image of the other.
It looks like a letter "S", with the upper portion depicting the head and neck a bit larger and bulged out than the lower portion that has the tail. The features in each dragon are fairly etched, but not meticulously so. You can see its eye, the pointy nose, its horns and open mouth. The body is scaled all over, with fins on the outer portion that go the entire length of the body down to the tail, which looks spiky. Each dragon is also depicted with an outstretched claw.
The dragon on the left side is rich 18-karat or 22-karat gold-plated. The dragon on the right side is shiny silver.
The twin dragons come together at the mouths, which are clutching at a gilt ball. From this ball dangles a gilt coin, which has Chinese characters that represent good luck. In between the dragons' tails is another, slightly smaller, gilt coin with the same characters.
The yin yang dragons measure 6 1/2" tall and 4 1/2" wide and hang from a thick textured chain which is half golden and half silver. The necklace has a length of about 18 1/2". It has a hook clasp on the gilt end and a silver ball drop at the end of the silver chain.
The necklace is marked Kenneth © Lane within an oval hangtag. It is in A+ condition, as if never used at all.
Kenneth Lane Rarest 'Yin Yang' Double Dragon Bib Necklace, 1970s
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