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PIGMENT LAB TOKYO

Basic Knowledge of Base Materials Used in Oriental Art: Explained by Chief Iwaizumi

2019-08-09

As Gesso has a lot of types, such as Bologna Gesso and Gesso Sotitle, 

there are varieties of paper which is often used in Oriental Art too. In this article, we asked Chief Iwaizumi about the basic knowledge of paper. 


-In Western art, there are a variety of base materials, such as campus or watercolor paper. What kinds of papers are there in Oriental art?

Paper and silk are often used in oriental Art.

There are also variety of types in terms of combination and method of painting, such as campus and watercolor paper.




-What are they made of?

For Paper, ingredients and the name they call are different in China and Japan.

In China, it is called “SEN-SHI(宣紙)” which is made of mixing rice straw and pteroceltis tatarinowii(SEITAN). 


In Japan, it is called “WASHI(和紙)” or "IKIGAMI(生紙)which are made of mulberry(KOZO), Paper bush(MITSUMATA), and Fibers taken from the bark of a clove(GANPI).

Furthermore, both countries have produced papers with a variety of texture through each processing method of ingredients, compounding ration, and manufacturing methods. For silk also, different types of texture have produced depending on the method of weaving, such as thinness or thickness of the thread, and a number or the method of warp and woof.




-Could you tell us the difference between each ingredient of paper?

Firstly, about the ingredients of Chinese "SEN-SHI", the more the rice straw is, the softer the paper gets and Sumi ink appears well on paper.

The more pteroceltis tatarinowii(SEITAN) is, the stronger the paper gets and blur ink appears well.

 

Secondly, let's talk about the ingredients of Japanese paper. Imagine the texture of WASHI Paper; the texture comes from the main ingredients, KOZO. The characteristics of KOZO is long fabric, and strong. MITSUMATA and GANPI are the ingredients used in paper money. Fabric is short and glossy. Before the Meiji Period, most of the painting on WASHI Paper was made from MITSUMATA and GANPI


Are there any differences and similarities between Western and Oriental base materials?

 

For the similarities, there are exceptions, but both finish their works in white color or the color close to white.

This is to increase the color image of paints by using the backlight effect from white color.

 

For the differences, Western art uses the ground coating to make it white since the original base color is brown. On the contrary, Oriental art rarely uses the ground coating because the original base color is already white.

Therefore, the method of drawing that utilizes the materials has been developed.




In PIGMENT TOKYO, we have a set of original WASHI Paper for you to try 16 different types of paper.

Our staffs make this product specially, including the process of paper cutting and outer box design.


If you are interested, please consider buying for trial.


PIGMENT Original Paper Set

https://pigment.tokyo/ja/product/detail?id=3179



Profile

Chief / Art Materials Expert of PIGMENT TOKYO

KEI IWAIZUMI

Chief / Art Materials Expert of PIGMENT TOKYO Doctor of Fine Arts at Kyoto University of Art and Design Instructor of Japanese Style Painting Course at Kyoto University of Art and Design Received a Ph.D. with a dissertation about animal glue method from Kyoto University of Art and Design in 2015. While researching and instructing art materials at PIGMENT TOKYO, he also creates art works reflecting his philosophy of material existence.

Chief / Art Materials Expert of PIGMENT TOKYO Doctor of Fine Arts at Kyoto University of Art and Design Instructor of Japanese Style Painting Course at Kyoto University of Art and Design Received a Ph.D. with a dissertation about animal glue method from Kyoto University of Art and Design in 2015. While researching and instructing art materials at PIGMENT TOKYO, he also creates art works reflecting his philosophy of material existence.