Materials & Techniques in the Decorative Arts: An Illustrated Dictionary

Front Cover
Lucy Trench
University of Chicago Press, 2000 - Art - 572 pages
In our industrialized society, it is often difficult to imagine how the objects around us are made. How, for example, are triple spirals put into the stem of a wine glass or table tops inlaid with whole landscapes of semi-precious stones? This unique dictionary is devoted to the fascinating materials and techniques used in the decorative arts. Materials range from the exotic to the most basic, from rare stones found only in the mountains of Badakshan, unsavory animal products, and the ground bodies of South American insects to ones as common as sand, clay, and lime.

Compiled by a team of experts, each with an intimate knowledge of his or her subject, the entries are written in clear, accessible language and supplemented by numerous photographs and drawings. Each core material (glass, ceramics, textiles, paper, plastics, leather, metal, stone, wood, and paint) is covered from its raw state through any processing or preparation to various craft stages and finally, to any surface finishing.

Traditionally, the kind of information found in these pages has been passed on from craftsman to craftsman or confined to highly specialized books, and even common terms are often misunderstood. This dictionary makes the subject accessible to all--from art and architectural historians, curators, collectors, restoration specialists, artists, and museum staff to decorators, aficionados, and those who enjoy watching Antiques Roadshow. In short, this book is for all those who are intrigued by the materials and techniques used to create the beautiful objects that surround us.

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User Review  - juglicerr - LibraryThing

This looks like a very useful referent book. It has more than 1,000 entries explaining materials and techniques in the decoratived arts. The explanations seem to be quite detailed, and sometimes ... Read full review

About the author (2000)

Lucy Trench has been a conservator at the Victoria and Albert Museum, the editor of publications for the National Gallery, London, and materials and technigques editor for the Grove Dictionary of Art.

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