A couple years ago, the artist and designer Jonathan Wahl produced a series of large charcoal drawings (yes, these are drawings!) of Victorian jet mourning jewelry. Here is what he says about the series:
The jet jewelry that were the models for my drawings were made during the mid to late 19th century carved by hand from jet, a fossilized material similar to coal but more durable. They were worn during a woman's period of mourning after the death of a loved one when wearing conventional precious jewelry would have been deemed inappropriate.
Today these objects seem Gothic, yet contemporary and almost timeless due to their reflective surfaces and monochromatism. . . Both the objects' timeless beauty and our alienation from their original roles make them perfectly ambiguous when viewed in the scale in which I have rendered them.
Images courtesy of Sienna Gallery