mokushin kanshitsu 木心乾漆
KEY WORD : art history / sculptures
Also mokushin kanshitsuzou 木心乾漆像, mokushin kanshitsu-zukuri 木心乾漆造. Lit. wood-core dry lacquer. A method of making a lacquer statue. First a roughly carved wooden core was covered with several layers of hemp cloth soaked in lacquer, and then surface details such as facial features and draperies were molded in *kokuso-urushi 木屎漆 with a thickened lacquer paste containing wood powder. The structure of the wooden core *shingi 心木 varied considerably depending on the period of construction and the size and form of the statue. It was sometimes a single block, and sometimes assembled from several pieces of timber. The lacquer layer tended to be in the range 1cm-3cm thick. This technique is thought to have developed in the late Nara period, slightly later than the hollow dry lacquer technique *dakkatsu kanshitsu 脱活乾漆, and is sometimes considered to be a simplification of that technique. There was also a tendency, at the end of the Nara period, to carve the wooden core with greater precision, and use lacquer only for small surface details. This is thought to have provided a step towards the development of all-wooden statuary in the Heian period.


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