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Chinese Enamel Getting Interest

November 17, 2013
By Terry and Kim Kovel , The Post-Journal

The Chinese enameling called cloisonne has been made for centuries. A thin metal wire is bent into shape on a metal vase and soldered into place. Then colored enamels are floated in to fill each space and form the decoration. The word "cloison" is French for "fence" and is the source of the word cloisonne. But there also was another type of enamel-on-metal object made in China by the 17th century. It is called "Peking enamel" or "Canton enamel." A metal vase was covered with thick enamel, usually white, then fired. Then an artist painted a scene or pattern with colored enamels, and the vase was fired again. These enameled metal pieces were usually made to resemble European designs and most were exported. The quality of the work deteriorated during the next few centuries and this type of enamel is rarely made today. Recognizing cloisonne and its thin metal lines is easy, but Peking enamels closely resemble porcelain. A

 
 

 

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