Barcelona, 2023.

Forget me not explores the lack of space that contemporary Western society grants to mourners. Through a historical investigation of 18th and 19th century mourning jewelry in England, Teresa Estapé, renowned for her work in jewelry, simultaneously vindicates and breaks with the Romantic and Victorian tradition of this jewelry, opening a dialogue with the contemporary and with an artistic territory that explores the social stigmatization of protocols or rituals of departure, especially that of death.

The beginning of the 20th century marked a process of exclusion of death from the public sphere, as one of the objectives of the modern hygienist movement. Along with the silencing of death by society, the symbols and rituals associated with it disappeared and mourning was stripped of its social materiality. This piece responds to the need for a symbol of remembrance and refers to the social need to mourn.

Here, this symbol is imagined through Forget me not, a piece composed of a set of mourning jewelry made entirely of jet, carefully placed in a metal and glass showcase that generates a separation between the object and the viewer. Despite the distance created, it creates an unexpected sense of life: the display case emanates heat, imitating the temperature produced by a human body. The absence of the body also symbolizes how the object is no longer worn, having lost its function in modern culture. Similarly, the dark black jet attracts the viewer's gaze, as the design allows light to be emitted by each of the inanimate pieces.

Jet dominates the space, and was chosen after extensive research and trips to the north of England, to Whitby - a coastal town in Yorkshire - where one of the best varieties of jet in the world is found. This mineral, which is surprisingly black and light, is produced from the decomposition of wood over millions of years and was popularized by Queen Victoria and the strict protocols she kept for more than four decades in her mourning for the death ofher husband, Prince Albert.

Seaweed. Robin Hood's Bay, England.

Queen Victoria of England in mourning dress / Research and design with jet, onyx and obsidian / Monkey puzzle tree. Yorkshire, England.

Installation Forget Me Not. Arco 2023, Madrid / Detail of jet and oxidised silver necklace.

Mourning jewelry set in iron and glass display case heated to 36º.

Detail of necklace and earrings from the jet parure.