Cloissoné Vases

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Chinese cloisonné first appeared in the early 14th century during the Ming dynasty. The technique did not become popular in Japan until the late 16th century. One of the distinctive elements of Japanese cloisonné is the delicacy of the wire used to separate the enamel colors.

The Chinese introduced cloisonné, an ancient art of decorating metal vessels, to Japan in the 1830s. Through this technique, artists create intricately compartmentalized designs with soldered metal wires, fill them with colored enamel, then fire, grind and polish them. Objects that are embellished with cloisonné designs, like the technique itself, are often also called cloisonné.