Applying pyrolysis-gas chromatography/mass spectrometry to the identification of oriental lacquers: study of two lacquered shields
- 200 Downloads
Oriental lacquers have been used as coating materials for thousands of years for wooden, ceramics, leather and metal objects. Lacquers are natural polymers obtained from three species growing in different regions of Asia: Rhus vernicifera (China, Japan and Korea); Rhus succedanea (Vietnam and Taiwan); and Melanorrhoea usitate (Myanmar and Thailand). The identification of lacquer films is important for conservation and restoration purposes, as well as for art history studies because it may help in determining the origin of the lacquered objects. In this work, pyrolysis-gas chromatography/mass spectrometry using a filament-type pyrolyser was successfully applied to the characterization of oriental lacquers. A method to identify the three kinds of lacquer was developed and applied to the study of two lacquered shields imported from Asia in the sixteenth century. The materials that constitute the shields were also examined by Fourier-transform infrared microspectroscopy and details of the lacquering technique are reported.
KeywordsOriental lacquer Rhus vernicifera Rhus succedanea Melanorrhoea usitate Py-GC/MS FTIR-μs
The authors wish to acknowledge Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia for financial support (PhD grant SFRH/BD/27573/2006) and Professor Miyakoshi from Meiji University for the lacquer references.
- 3.Webb M (2000) Lacquer: technology and conservation. Butterworth–Heinemann, OxfordGoogle Scholar
- 4.Shôno-Sládek M (1994) The splendor of Urushi: the lacquer art collection at the Museum of East Asian Art, Cologne. Inventory catalogue with reflexions on cultural history. Museum of East Asian Art, CologneGoogle Scholar
- 5.Leiria L (2001) BPJS 3:9–26Google Scholar
- 6.Abreu P (2005) Namban urushi objects in Portugal. The great family of Portuguese-Oriental furniture. In: National Research Institute for Cultural Properties (eds) The Role of Urushi in International Exchange. The 27th International Symposium on the Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Property, 3rd–5th December 2003, Tokyo, JapanGoogle Scholar
- 7.Carvalho PM, In: Carvalho PM (ed) O mundo da Laca, 2000 anos de história. Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian, LisboaGoogle Scholar
- 9.Chiavari G, Prati S (2003) Chromatographia 58:543–554Google Scholar
- 10.Shedrinsky A, Baer NS (2007) In: Wampler TP (ed) Applied pyrolysis handbook, 2nd edn. CRC, Boca RatonGoogle Scholar
- 12.Niimura N, Miyakoshi T (2003) J Mass Spectrom Soc Jpn 51:439–457Google Scholar
- 16.Derrick MR, Stulik D, Landry JM (1999) Infrared spectroscopy in conservation science. Getty Conservation Institute, Los AngelesGoogle Scholar
- 17.Bellamy LJ (1975) The infra-red spectra of complex molecules. Chapman and Hall, LondonGoogle Scholar