History and Process of Vietnamese Lacquer Art...
Vietnamese Lacquer Art has a history of over two thousand years.
In Phu Tho Province, in Northern Vietnam, resins are harvested
from the Rhus Succedanea Tree and converted into natural
lacquer, which is then applied to paintings and fine art. The
traditional lacquer process, as practiced in Vietnam, is complex
and requires 75 to 115 days to complete each piece. There are
many steps to the production of lacquer ware. Any imperfections
in the wood are first sealed with lacquer. The wood is then
covered with cotton gauze and covered with a thick mixture of
sawdust, alluvial soil, finely ground rock, and lacquer. After
drying it is sanded smooth under water. It is then painted with
a mixture of alluvial soil and lacquer and wet sanded. The
coating and sanding process is repeated at least two more times.
At this point, the artwork is applied to the piece by hand using
any combination of paints, seashell, mother of pearl, eggshell,
and other materials. The surface areas of piece without artwork
are painted with solid lacquer, while the areas with the design
are coated with a special clear lacquer. The artwork is then
entirely coated at least two more times with clear lacquer.
Finally, during the finishing process, the art piece is highly
polished with wax, preserving and accenting the finished