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Re: [Orchid] Salt as an ornamental stone
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peter Sunday, November 18, 2012
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>     the Wielescha Salt Mines, and now a World Heritage Site. Most of the
>     carvings and statues are religiously based. 

    Thank you for the information Jamie. Does anybody disagree that
    Michaelangelo's carvings and statues would be as priceless today if
    they were carved in salt rather than marble? Maybe more so since Sal
    Sapientia (holy salt) is part of religious liturgy (p 7 of "Salt" by
    Kurlensky, 2002). 

    That being so, the artistry which goes into cutting/carving/grinding
    far outweighs the value of the minerals no matter how rare, durable
    or aesthetic they may be. Make it more appealing to the eye and you
    can add enormous value. 

    It is the same for other stones. Zoellner in "The Heartless Stone"
    goes into considerable detail on how low the monetary value of
    diamond in the rough can be and he spares no words to say how little
    aesthetic value he considers the stone to have without enhancement.
    Writing in his anthropology book on Ancient Mexico, Peterson says
    that jade was the most valued stone to those people and only
    aristocrats could lawfully own it with severe penalties to violators.
    However, they considered raw jade to have zero value. 

    Giacomo at Torart has a block of my "low grade" nephrite (I have
    higher grade samples as well). I have a huge amount of it under claim
    and I wonder how to use all grades. I also have two other finds from
    my field work which I am studying for possible claiming and the
    natural patterning and grain of the stones is greatly different.
    Nephrite jade (defined as actinolite/tremolite with artistry value)
    is quite common in BC and it is our official emblem/stone since 1968.
    Recently I ran some tests with thin cuts. Giacomo may wish to slice
    the block he has for mosaic work (also with a long history in Italy).
    I have 1 mm and 1/2 mm slices. 

    Put a bright light behind the slices (I used an ordinary flashlight)
    and you see the excellent bright green colours. Mosaics in lamp
    shades and various other works of art could be a use for this
    product. Modern lighting technologies are advancing too with tiny LED
    and laser lights having great power to illuminate. Why not mosaic 3D
    works of art more generally with lighting to enhance the jade? 

    A number of postings on the "favorite stone" topic mentioned
    lighting effects. Room lighting is highly variable. Lighting can be
    used in artistry and craftsmanship to good effect as well. Is there
    any jeweller with a display case who does not consider this?

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