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Best of the Best 2012: Pens: Enamel: David Oscarson Harlequin

John Lyon

David Oscarson, the irreverent St. Louis pen maker, is known to produce designs based on themes such as the Mayan apocalypse. But his most successful creation was Pierrot and Pierrette, a 2005 release of his and her pens that celebrated the romance of the eponymous couple. Late last year, he followed it up with Harlequin, a pen based on the mischievous third character in the famous commedia dell’arte love triangle who eventually wins the heart of Pierrette. The new design sports a playful diamond patchwork pattern inspired by Harlequin’s costume, depicted in five bright shades of enamel. Each color requires multiple firings at specific temperatures to bring out the material’s translucence; the slightest deviation can muddy the hue. The multicolor designs come in five variations (red, green, blue, white, and black), with each version limited to 88 examples as either a fountain pen ($5,400) or rollerball ($5,200). (636.458.4345, www.davidoscarson.com)

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Courtesy of Shakespeare and Company - Paul Foster Books - the NY Antiquarian Book Fair
Photo courtesy of Klein Sun Gallery, New York; Li Hongbo