Creativity in Pandemic Times

Yvel's Covid-19 Mask

Yvel's Covid-19 mask. Image via

2020 and Covid-19 introduced new challenges to Yvel, like the rest of the world. Faced with financial challenges and forced to furlough his employees, Isaac Levy approached a wealthy patron. The result was the commission of the world’s most expensive Covid-19 mask costing 1.5 million dollars and taking five months to complete. Encrusted with 210 carats of black and white diamonds, the mask is fully functional with a slot for a disposable N-95 mask to fit inside. The proceeds from this sale allowed the company to continue to function and to pay the employees during this unprecedented time.


Yvel is an Israeli luxury jewelry company established in 1986 by Isaac and Orna Levy. Their award winning designs are centered on creating unique pieces of wearable art fashioned around nature’s finest resources. They specialize in using the most unique pearls, gems and diamonds, combined with lush satin finished 18K gold. Unlike most jewelry designers, the process starts when owner Isaac Levy hand selecting the pearls and gems. This is then the jumping off point for the creative process. The jewelry that results has a character all its own, often with natural free forms dictated by the lustrous pearls and brilliant gems used. Traditionally, jewelry has been used for adornment, but not created as a work of art itself. Yvel has bridged this divide by designing one-of-a-kind pieces that are “Art to Wear.”

Not only has Yvel won many awards for their designs, but has created a company with a deep commitment to social responsibility. Drawing on his own challenging experiences as an immigrant to Israel, Isaac Levy has made a commitment to provide opportunities though education and job training to support the Ethiopian immigrant population. The goal is to aid integration into Israeli society. 90% of the Yvel employees are immigrants from 23 countries. In 2010, they opened the Megemeria (meaning Genesis in the Ethiopian language, Amharic) School of Jewelry and Art to provide training for these new arrivals.

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