Jean DUNAND, biography
Biography of Jean DUNAND (software translate from French Source)
images Source: Facebook Page about Jean Dunand (www.facebook.com/pages/Jean-DUNAND/96935184608)
images from NHK TV program
Conservator use Urushi mix with sawdust and ???powder for mixture glue.
Studies in Conservation © 1994 International Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works
This paper describes the reconstruction of a fragmented, larger than life-size (1430mm tall) dry lacquer statue in the collection of the Department of Oriental Antiquities, British Museum (registration number 1880.3463). Some of the problems encountered and their solution are discussed. /// Ce papier décrit la reconstruction d’une statue laquée à sec qui se présentait en plusieurs fragments, plus grande que nature (1430mm de haut) et provenant de la collection du département des Antiquités Orientales du British Museum (no 1880.3463). On discute quelques-uns des problèmes rencontrés et leurs solutions. /// Die Arbeit beschreibt die Rekonstruktion einer fragmentarischen, überlebensgroßen (1,43m hohen) Lackstatue in der Orientabteilung des British Museum in London. Einige der dabei aufgetretenen Probleme und deren Lösung werden erörtert.
Book: Lacquer :Technology and Conservation: A Comprehensive Guide to the Technology and Conservation of Asian and European LacquerPosted: 2011/05/01
ISBN 13: 9780750644129
Publication Date: 2000
* 1 Urushiol-based lacquers
* 2 Nitrocellulose lacquers
* 3 Acrylic lacquers
* 4 Water-based lacquers
* 5 Japanning
* 6 See also
* 7 References
For the conservator this book is an invaluable tool when examining the options available for treatment of lacquer. Not only does it cover the technology and methods of treatment for both types of lacquer, but it assesses current practices enabling the conservator to make more More…
informed decisions.Controversial issues are also debated, such as whether Asian lacquer should be restored in the Asian manner, using non-reversible materials, or using western methods that are theoretically reversible. As the book describes production technology and decorative techniques it will also be a useful aid for both art historians and collectors alike in identifying and dating lacquerware.
For the conservator this book is an invaluable tool when examining the options available for treatment. Not only does it cover the technology and methods of treatment for both types of lacquer, but it assesses current practices enabling the conservator to make more informed decisions. Controversial issues are discussed such as whether Asian lacquer should be restored in the Asian manner, using non-reversible materials, or using western methods that are theoretically reversible. As the book describes production technology and decorative techniques it will also prove to be a useful aid for both art historians and collectors alike in identifying and dating lacquerware.
Lacquer has long been misunderstood, particularly because the word itself has been used to characterize many different materials. For centuries the term has been used to refer to the Asian and the European materials. At present it is used to describe any glossy coating, from cellulose nitrate to modern plastic finishes.
In a general sense, lacquer is a clear or coloured varnish that dries by solvent evaporation and often a curing process as well that produces a hard, durable finish, in any sheen level from ultra matte to high gloss and that can be further polished as required.
The term lacquer originates from the Portuguese word for lac, a type of resin excreted from certain insects. Regardless, in modern usage, lac-based varnishes are referred to as shellac, while lacquer refers to other polymers dissolved in volatile organic compounds (VOCs), such as nitrocellulose, and later acrylic compounds dissolved in lacquer thinner, a mixture of several solvents typically containing butyl acetate and xylene or toluene.
While both lacquer and shellac are traditional finishes, lacquer is more durable than shellac.
The French word lacre “a kind of sealing wax”, from Portuguese lacre, unexplained variant of lacca “resinous substance”, from Arabic lakk, from Persian lak, the verb lac meaning “to cover or coat with laqueur”. The root of the word is the Sanskrit word laksha (लक्ष) meaning “one hundred thousand”, which was used for both the Lac insect (because of their enormous number) and the scarlet resinous secretion it produces that was used as lacquer in ancient India and neighboring areas. Lac resin was once imported in sizeable quantity into Europe from India along with Eastern woods. The modern Hindi-Urdu word lakh (लाख, لاکھ), meaning “hundred thousand,” is also derived from the same Sanskrit root-word.
 Urushiol-based lacquers
According to Encyclopædia Britannica, varnish resin derived from a tree indigenous to China, species Toxicodendron vernicifluum (formerly Rhus vernicifluum), commonly known as the varnish tree. The manufacturing process was introduced into Japan and remained secret for centuries. These lacquers produce very hard, durable finishes that are both beautiful and very resistant to damage by water, acid, alkali or abrasion. The active ingredient of the resin is urushiol, a mixture of various phenols suspended in water, plus a few proteins.
Urushiol-based lacquers differ from most others, being slow-drying, water-based, and set by oxidation and polymerization, rather than by evaporation alone. In order for it to set properly it requires humidity and warm temperature. The phenols oxidize and polymerize under the action of an enzyme laccase, yielding a substrate that, upon proper evaporation of its water content, is hard. Lacquer skills became very highly developed in India and Asia, and many highly decorated pieces were produced. The process of lacquer application in India is different from that which is followed in China and Japan. There are two types of lacquer: one obtained from the T. Vernicifluum tree and the other from an insect. In India the insect lac was once used from which a red dye was first extracted, later what was left of the insect was a grease that was used for lacquering objects. The fresh resin from the T. vernicifluum trees causes urushiol-induced contact dermatitis and great care is required in its use. The Chinese treated the allergic reaction with shell-fish.
The contemporary theory held that from China, knowledge of lacquer technology was introduced to Korea, and from there to Japan. It was believed that Japan had also been using lacquer from ancient times, but the systematic process of application was developed by the Chinese. With the discovery of lacquer ware in Japan dating back to Jōmon period, conflicting theories claim that technology may have been independently developed in Japan. Trade of lacquer objects traveled through various routes to the Middle East. Known applications of lacquer in China included coffins, plates, music instruments and furniture. Lacquer mixed with powdered cinnabar is used to produce the traditional red lacquerware from China.
The trees must be at least 10 years old before cutting to bleed the resin. It sets by a process called “aqua-polymerization”, absorbing oxygen to set; placing in a humid environment (called “furo” or “muro” in Japanese, meaning “a bath” or “a room”) allows it to absorb more oxygen from the evaporation of the water.
Lacquer-yielding trees in Thailand, Vietnam, Burma and Taiwan, called Thitsi, are slightly different; they do not contain urushiol, but similar substances called “laccol” or “thitsiol”. The end result is similar but softer than the Chinese or Japanese lacquer. Unlike Japanese and Chinese Toxicodendron verniciflua resin, Burmese lacquer does not cause allergic reactions; it sets slower, and is painted by craftsmen’s hands without using brushes.
Raw lacquer can be “coloured” by the addition of small amounts of iron oxides, giving red or black depending on the oxide. There is some evidence that its use is even older than 8,000 years from archeological digs in China. Later, pigments were added to make colours. It is used not only as a finish, but mixed with ground fired and unfired clays applied to a mould with layers of hemp cloth, it can produce objects without need for another core like wood. The process is called “kanshitsu” in Japan. Advanced decorative techniques using additional materials such as gold and silver powders and flakes (“makie”) were refined to very high standards in Japan also after having been introduced from China. In the lacquering of the Chinese musical instrument, the guqin, the lacquer is mixed with deer horn powder (or ceramic powder) to give it more strength so it can stand up to the fingering.
There are more than four forms of urushiol which is written as thus:
Japanning Just as China is a common name for Chinese ceramic,
Japan is an old name for Japanese Lacquerware[*] (made from the sap of the Lacquer Tree) and its European imitations. As Asian and Indian lacquer work became popular in England, France, the Netherlands, and Spain in the 17th century the Europeans developed imitations that were effectively a different technique of lacquering. The European technique, which is used on furniture and other objects, uses varnishes that have a resin base similar to shellac. The technique, which became known as japanning, involves applying several coats of varnish which are each heat-dried and polished. In the 18th Century this type of lacquering gained a large popular following.
2 in 1 …Put the skill of Japanese craftmanship into Lacquer painting of Vietnam
Source : http://www.urushi-artist.com
- The oldest lacquer artifacts found so far in Japanese tombs are 6,000 years old, while in Vietnamese tombs archaeologists have found many lacquered objects dating back to the fourth century B.C.
- Urushi (the Japanese name for lacquer) is a viscous fluid organic material that comes from the milky sap of several varieties of an Asian tree belonging to the Anacardiacea family. Nearly all Southeast Asian countries have a variety of their own: in Japan, it is the Rhus vernicifera; in Cambodia, it is the Rhus Malanorrhea. Vietnam, too, has its own varieties, the most reputed being the Rhus Succedanea. Urushi should not be confused with industrial synthetic coatings that are used to impart a high gloss to surfaces.
B. Physical and technical characteristics
- After the sap has been tapped, it is boiled, skimmed, and filtered through a hempen cloth to remove impurities. It is then stored in wooden barrels for several weeks and graded according to the age of the tree, the season it was collected, and the depth at which it separated after maturation.
- Urushi is a medium with remarkable qualities. It is highly resilient and durable thanks to its biochemical properties (how its enzymes react both with oxygen and with proteins in order for urushi to cure and harden). Before painting begins, the support (plywood or polystyrene) is primed with ten layers of lacquer mixed with very fine clay.
- As a result, it becomes very resistant, water-proof, insect-proof, and mold-proof, and the support is prevented from cracking, bending, or warping under fluctuations of temperature or humidity. Urushi also has strong adhesive properties: any material added to it binds with it permanently. In addition, it provides a rich array of esthetic effects of textures, dimensions, layers, colors, light, and shine.
- Urushi products can last hundreds of years while retaining their glossiness, smoothness and elegance. Their colors do not fade with the impact of light and time, and amazingly, as the years go by and the pieces age, their colors keep getting deeper and become more luminous.
- Artists mix urushi with color pigments and various natural dyes. Other embedding materials can be used, such as eggshell, mother-of-pearl, plant fibers, sand, and gold and silver leaf.
C. The Process of making urushi paintings
Making an urushi painting is a long and demanding process. It may take several months, depending on the specific technique of the artist, the number of urushi layers that are applied, and atmospheric conditions that are favorable enough for the lacquer to cure.
- Good priming is a long and arduous process, but essential to ensure long-term durability. Before urushi painting can begin, the support needs to be primed with ten coats of lacquer. Each coat must completely cover the support: front, back, and sides. Each of these coats needs to cure completely and then be sanded before the next one is applied.
- The support is first painted with persimmon tannin to seal the surface and facilitate absorption, and then sanded. A first layer of raw urushi is applied and then sanded after it has dried.
- Thin sheets of hemp cloth are soaked in raw urushi and attached to cover tightly all sides of the support. A new layer of raw urushi is applied and then sanded after curing.
- Subsequently, a foundation layer of urushi is applied mixed with ground clay. Four more such coats mixed with a decreasing ratio of ground clay and an increasing ratio of pulverized clay stone are then applied. Two more layers of raw urushi are applied to finalize the priming.
- Once fully cured, the support is sanded and polished. When fully primed, the support is pitch black, perfectly smooth, and permanently protected against decay or damage caused by water, acids, heat, insects, and mold.
- After sanding, five layers of the clearest kind of urushi are applied to serve as a clear-coat protector.
- Finally, the entire surface of the work is polished by rubbing it first with either a soft cloth or the bare palm of the artist’s hands until adequate depth of appearance and a wonderful sheen is obtained.
- The surface of clear lacquer is protective and durable. The only maintenance the artwork needs is dusting with a light soft feather duster or a soft dry cloth. If necessary, urushi paintings can be cleaned with almost anything that is not abrasive or harsh. Fingerprints can be removed by rubbing with a soft damp cloth and the surface needs to be dried immediately with a soft dry towel. A mild soap or alcohol can be used to remove stickier dirt. Rinse well with clear water and dry immediately with a soft paper towel.
- No polishing or varnishing product should be applied to the paintings. If desired, one can easily polish the painting again with the palm of the hand to make it cleaner and shinier.
Nhat Tran, a Vietnamese immigrant, utilizes the 6000-year-old Japanese process of urushi (lacquer) painting. Through non-traditional usage of urushi techniques, she achieves stunning visual effects unobtainable in other media.
“Urushi is a viscous organic sap that is tapped from several species of Asian trees,” said Tran. “It is a highly resilient and durable medium that is impervious to water, heat, mold, and insects; it has very strong adhesive properties and polymerizes when curing; and it provides a full array of gorgeous effects of textures, depths, layers, colors, light, and shine. As the years go by and the pieces age, their colors keep getting richer and more intense.”
Tran’s work contains up to 40 layers of lacquer, often embellished with exotic materials and precious metallic powders and foils between layers. Her sense of esthetic embraces the Asian soul. The result is elegant, understated, complex, and deserving of lengthy observation and contemplation.
Tran’s works are in numerous public and private collections, including the Renwick Gallery, National Museum of Women in the Arts, Corcoran Gallery of Art, Indianapolis Airport Authority, and Indiana State Museum.
Nhat Tran express who she’s and about her works in her website http://www.urushi-artist.com
Trained as an oil painter since my youth, I have specialized over the last ten years (since 1998) in a magnificent medium that remains unusual in the United States despite its potential, namely Asian lacquer or urushi (after its Japanese name). Urushi is an art that reflects the esthetic sensibility of the Asian soul. Its mysterious beauty and universal appeal has always fascinated me, and thus urushi has become my primary medium of artistic expression.
Urushi is a viscous organic sap that is tapped from several species of Asian trees. It is a highly resilient and durable medium that is impervious to water, heat, mold, and insects; it has very strong adhesive properties and polymerizes when curing; and it provides a full array of gorgeous effects of textures, depths, layers, colors, light, and shine. As the years go by and the pieces age, their colors keep getting richer and more intense.
My non-traditional use of urushi has led me to discover how well it adapts to the demands of contemporary art. Lacquer painting produces visual effects that I cannot obtain with other media. I have produced a large number of two- and three-dimensional abstract paintings, usually on wood, but also on extruded polystyrene and fiberglass.
• 2010 Guest Researcher, Urushi Section in the Department of Crafts, Tokyo University of the Arts (Geidai), Tokyo, Japan (April–July)
• 1987–1992 Bachelor of Fine Arts, University of Fine Arts, in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Graduation with highest distinction
• 1978–1983 School of Art, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
• 2009 Panelist for the Indiana Arts Commission (visual arts)
• 2003–present Teaching Artist, VSA arts of Indiana (VSAI), Indianapolis
• 2001 Associate Instructor, Herron School of Art, Indiana University, Indianapolis
Source : http://www.urushi-artist.com
The Suan Pakkad Lacquer Pavilion
- The Lacquer Pavilion is visual highlight of the Museum and an extraordinary example of Thai art, positioned at the edge of the garden.
- The structure is more than 200 years old and it formerly stood in the precincts of a temple. The late Prince Chumbhot purchased the building and moved it to these grounds, then had it restored. The pavilion consists of a room within a room. A narrow corridor winds all the way around an inner room.
- The walls of the corridor are decorated in richly carved gilded wood. The interior of the inner room is decorated entirely in gold and black lacquer. The effect is stunning. The technique of lacquering in blak and gold was known in China for thousands of years but introduced to Thailand in the Ayutthaya period. The work portrays a uniform black background with details of the Life of Buddha on the the upper panels and scenes from the Ramakien on the lower portions.
- As this building is a reconstruction of an earlier Ho Trai at Wat Bang Kling in Ayutthaya Province not all the aspects of traditional depictions are present now.
- The paintings depict various events from the life of Buddha, along with others from the Hindu epic, Ramayara. There are also the numerous scenes from daily Thai life, as well as some showing early foreign visitors to Ayutthaya. These foreigners are depicted in the uniforms of the period of Louis XIV. In 1687 French troops were despatched to Siam to protect King Narai from English and Dutch forces.