Displayed on the second floor

Skills of chinkin(carving)

Chinkin(carving) is the technique of drawing a design on the surface after the uwanuri process and carving the design using various chisels and chinkin(carving) knives.
Lacquer is rubbed in to the carved parts as an adhesive and then, color pigments, gold leaves, etc. are placed thereon and attached by softly tapping from above. In such way, the surface is beautifully decorated with various colors.
This technique is called “chinkin(carving)” because gold leaves and color pigments are places at the bottom of the carved parts (chinkin (沈金), the Chinese characters meaning to immerse the gold deep under). With the chinkin(carving) technique, the lacquerware items are gorgeously finished.
A design is carved with a chisel on the surface where black lacquer is applied, and red powder is placed in the carved parts to bring out the design.
Process of chinkin(carving)

A design pattern is made by drawing a design on a piece of Japanese washi paper. From the backside of the paper, the design is traced with a brush using a material made by mixing orpiment or chalk with water. Place the traced side of the paper on the surface and lightly rub with a brush so that the design will be transferred on to the surface.
Thick lines are carved along the transferred design with a thick and wide chisel.
Carving of thin lines with a sen-bori chisel which is small and flat.
When expressing dots, dots are carved with a pointed chisel.
When expressing gradation/fading, the surface is lightly shaved with a wide and flat chisel.
Lacquer is rubbed in the carved parts using cottons. Extra lacquer that ran off the edge of the design is wiped off with Japanese washi paper.
Colors are applied by placing color pigments, gold powder, etc. on the lacquer which is rubbed in the design with cotton.
A piece of gold leaf is cut in to adequate sizes and placed on the lacquer which is rubbed in the design. Then, burry the gold leaves by lightly tapping with cotton.
Extra gold leaf that ran over the edge of the design is wiped off with a piece of Japanese washi paper soaked with rapeseed oil.