Chinese lacquerware manufacturing standards and collection knowledge

Lacquer is one of the great inventions of the Chinese nation. China’s history of lacquer can be traced back to the distant Neolithic Age, lacquer after thousands of years of testing, leaving posterity is that brilliant history and gorgeous treasures. Today, purple lily with you to appreciate the history of China’s lacquer, exquisite lacquer technology.

Chinese lacquerware manufacturing standards and collection knowledge Photo 2

1.What is lacquer

Lacquer ware is an excellent traditional handicraft in ancient China. It refers to daily necessities and arts and crafts that are coated with a layer of raw paint on the outside of the objects. The lacquerware is bright and dazzling in color, and has practical value and aesthetic value.

2.the decoration process of lacquer ware

According to different historical dynasties, the decoration process of lacquer ware is also different. Ming Dynasty ancient book “Decoration Record” is the only preserved lacquer craft monograph. Lacquer decoration process is roughly divided into:

Step 1 Fill with paint

First draw the desired pattern on the lacquer, and then fill in the color paint.

  1. Carved lacquer

Carved lacquer, also known as carved red, takes large lacquer as raw material, piles layers on the body to the appropriate thickness, and then sculpts the technique.

  1. Pile paint

Pile paint is generally used to make patterns with different paint colors, the pattern itself is higher than the surface of the lacquer, similar to relief, but it is not relief, but the effect of the paint pile.

  1. Hip gold

Hip metal means to insert gold into an object.

  1. Trace gold

Use gold and silver materials to paint patterns on the objects for decoration.

  1. Mother-of-pearl

It’s a technique of decorating lacquerware with shells.

  1. One color paint

One-color paint refers to the paint of only one color on the whole body of the object, without any modification pattern.

  1. Gold and silver are smooth

Using gold and silver flakes, carved into various patterns, paste on the lacquer that has been polished smooth, after the gold and silver patterns are firmly pasted, paint a number of heavy, after fine grinding, polishing until the gold and silver patterns are revealed, and finally the lacquer is pushed to the light.

Lacquerware of Chinese dynasties

  1. Neolithic lacquerware

As early as 7000 years ago in Hemudu culture in Yuyao, Zhejiang Province, the ancient ancestors of our country had already made lacquerware. The making and use of lacquer ware is a great invention of human material culture. According to experts, our country was the earliest country to use lacquer ware. And then Liangzhu culture lacquer ware is the peak representative of the lacquer technology in the new period of our country.

  1. Summer, Shang and Zhou lacquerware

The lacquerware in Xia Dynasty of our country was not only used in daily life, but also used in sacrificial activities. Han Feizi’s “Ten Chapters” recorded: “Yu as a sacrificial vessel, black paint its outside, and Zhu painted its inside.” It shows that the lacquerware of the Yu period of the Xia Dynasty is black on the outside and decorated with red lacquer on the inside.

The lacquerware varieties in the Shang Dynasty were mainly daily utensils, and rectangular and round lacquer boxes appeared. Shang Dynasty lacquerware decoration is mainly animal pattern and geometric pattern. The paint is red and black. The Shang Dynasty also appeared inlay and gold foil technology. Lacquerware craftsmanship in the Shang Dynasty had reached a very high level.

Since the Zhou Dynasty, ancient ancestors inlaid materials such as shells, gold and jade on the surface of lacquerware. The ancient book “Zhou Li. Kao Gong Ji” records that the use of lacquer has not only been used in daily life and sacrificial utensils, but also has been widely used in Musical Instruments, weapons and other fields. The decoration of Western Zhou lacquerware also had a greater development than that of the Xia and Shang Dynasties. It is the most characteristic decoration technique of Western Zhou Dynasty lacquerware to compose the pattern with the color painting and clam slice.

  1. Spring and Autumn and Warring States lacquer

During the Spring and Autumn Period, lacquerware technology reached a mature stage. The ornate lacquer art style is the hallmark of this period. In the lacquerware of the Spring and Autumn Period, realistic lacquerware patterns appeared, and ornamental lacquerware art also appeared.

The Warring States Period was the growth period of lacquer craft. Lacquerware has been integrated into People’s Daily life and is widely used in all classes. Lacquerware in the Warring States period is mostly combined with copper, while the decoration techniques inlaid with turquoise and mussel slices in the Shang and Zhou Dynasties are almost absent. Decorative patterns use more colors, but mostly red and black.

  1. Lacquerware of Qin and Han Dynasties

Lacquerware technology reached its heyday in the Qin and Han Dynasties. Lacquer ware of Qin and Han dynasties is light in material and skilled in technique. A characteristic of Qin Dynasty lacquerware is the widespread use of characters and symbols. In the Western Han Dynasty, the lacquerware production scale was larger and the production area was more widely distributed, which was the first peak of the development of lacquerware. Lacquerware was widely used in all levels of society, and the Qiangjin process appeared in the process.

  1. Wei, Jin, Southern and Northern Dynasties lacquerware

Due to the development of porcelain and changes in burial customs, the number of lacquerware in the Wei, Jin, Southern and Northern Dynasties gradually decreased, and the cost of luxurious lacquerware was higher, so it was only used by the nobility. The lacquerware of The Three Kingdoms period is most representative of Dongwu. Decorative techniques include painting paint, rhinoceros paint and so on. The painting content is rich and colorful, and the technique is skilled.

In the Eastern Jin Dynasty, lacquerware made by the people had to be approved by the government, and the production process was standardized. The lacquerware should be marked with the name of the craftsman and the time of production.

During the Southern and Northern Dynasties, Northern Wei lacquerware is the most representative.

  1. Sui, Tang and Five Dynasties lacquerware

During the Tang Dynasty, lacquer craft reached an unprecedented level of development. Various decorative crafts are magnificent, including mother-of-pearl craft, gold and silver smooth craft, carved lacquer craft, and even carved red lacquer ware. The excellent craftsmanship surpassed the previous dynasties, in which multi-purpose Mosaic decoration was the main feature of the Tang Dynasty lacquer, but also the embodiment of the craft style.

The five dynasties and ten kingdoms were prone to wars. The quantity of lacquerware is reduced, but the quality is higher. The black lacquer box inlaid with mother-of-pearl can best represent the high-level development of lacquerware in the Five dynasties. Mother-of-pearl lacquer is a fine work in the five dynasties of China. After Sui, Tang and five Dynasties, all kinds of new techniques came out one after another.

  1. Lacquerware of Song Dynasty

The Northern Song Dynasty and the Southern Song Dynasty are considered to be the same color lacquerware period. One color paint without any decoration and pattern set off, simple and generous. The one-color paint of Song Dynasty was mainly black, with red, yellow, brown and so on. The craftsmanship of mother-of-pearl in the Song Dynasty was thinner and finer than that in the previous dynasty, and exquisite patterns could also be carved on the fine mother-of-pearl. Of jiangsu wujin found kung, song dynasty gold lacquer is representative of the song dynasty kung, gold lacquer, also is the highest form of song dynasty lacquer process.

  1. Yuan Dynasty lacquerware

The lacquer ware in Yuan Dynasty was a prosperous period in the history of Chinese lacquer ware. There are four kinds of lacquer in Yuan Dynasty: one color lacquer, mother-of-pearl lacquer, Qiangjin lacquer and carved lacquer. Among them, carved lacquer is the most accomplished, which can be said to be in a magical state.

  1. Ming Dynasty lacquerware

The largest amount of lacquer produced in the Ming Dynasty is carved lacquer. During the Yongle period of the Ming Dynasty, most of them were carved red, but there were also less Qiangjin lacquer. Yongle carved lacquer has distinct characteristics of The Times. Works of this period are generally painted with thick paint, carved with fine details, and handled very properly.

  1. Qing Dynasty lacquerware

The lacquerware that can best represent the level of lacquerware production in the Qing Dynasty is the lacquerware produced by the Qingguan Manufacturing Office. The characteristics of lacquerware in Qing Dynasty are the comprehensive application of various lacquerware techniques. Qing Dynasty lacquerware was highly respected by the emperor, and officials from all over the country also offered lacquerware as an important tribute to the court. Qing Dynasty manufacturing office set the world skilled craftsmen, at any cost, produced gorgeous and gorgeous lacquerware, representing the royal art style and the highest level of Qing Dynasty lacquer art.

4. Identification and dating of lacquer ware

Lacquer identification has the following two points to pay attention to:

  1. Lacquerware in the past dynasties has its distinctive characteristics of The Times and production style, which should be identified according to the characteristics of The Times.
  2. Generally, old lacquerware will have a simple sense of The Times, fake lacquerware does not have that charm, and the smell will have an unpleasant lacquer smell.

The dating of lacquer should be judged according to the following aspects:

  1. Paint pattern
  2. Description of lacquerware
  3. Broken lines of lacquer

5. the collection and maintenance of lacquer

Collection and maintenance tips:

  1. Control the appropriate temperature and humidity.

Too humid environment will breed bacteria, thereby speeding up the life of the corroded lacquer; Too dry an environment can cause the lacquer to crack.

  1. The paint should be protected from insect attack

In addition to breeding bacteria that can erode lacquerware, insect pests are also an important reason for the loss of lacquerware.

  1. Don’t mix with other items.

It is easy to cause irreparable damage to lacquer.

  1. Gently remove dust with a soft long-bristled brush or cotton gauze.

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