Cloisonne urns have a unique production process that make them perfect for memorializing any person's personality. With special paints and coatings, cloisonné urns can be fashioned into a surprising array of colors and styles, and, of course, the wire underneath the enamel can be fashioned into a limitless number of designs. While their special beauty and elegance make cloisonné urns unlikely candidates to be buried, they do offer a, perhaps, surprising sturdiness. Cloisonne urns, properly cared for will last for generations as gorgeous centerpieces to touching memorial displays. Being made of a number of materials that can survive the elements, cloisonne urns can keep memories alive for centuries.
The History of Cloisonne
The word Cloisonne, language experts say, has its origins in 18th century France, but the process of making Cloisonne urns dates back much earlier. Archeologists have found cloisonne urns dating back to at least the time of the ancient Greeks, and they will surely uncover cloisonne urns for centuries to come. Cloisonne has proven to be a perfect urn construction process over the centuries because it appears it has the potential to last as long as the Earth itself. While it's still unclear exactly when the process began, historians say it probably has its roots in Ancient China. No matter when they were first made, Cloisonne urns made their way to the modern world in the 14th century via central Asia. That's when some missionaries re-discovered the process and introduced it throughout China. During the reign of the 15th century Ming Emperor, Chin Thai, cloisonne production was extremely prosperous. The primary characteristic of works created during Chin Thai’s rule comes from the fusing of the base color with a special type of blue enamel. As a result, the Chinese word for cloisonne is chng-t'ai-lan ("Ching-t'ai-Blue"). China’s dramatic achievements in the cloisonne technique have been attributed to its advanced knowledge of metallurgical technology, such as bronze casting and glass and glaze production techniques. This knowledge was quickly applied to enameling.
The Cloisonne Process
The process combines the sturdiness of metal with the flexibility and individual beauty of ceramic pottery. In a nutshell, the building process of cloisonné urns involves molding a sculpture out of a sturdy metal, attaching a wire design to that sculpture, and then covering the wire with ceramic enamel. The cloisonné urns are then fired in a kiln, and the enamel – along with the texture created by the wire underneath – is painted. The result is a beautiful cloisonne urn.
No matter the era, the cloisonné process has always required great artisan skill at each stage in the process.
This unique process makes cloisonne urns the perfect memorials to the most special of loved-ones. Through this special, historic method, cloisonné urns bring a timeless touch of elegance to any memorial display.
Cloisonne urns are commonly found in a vase shape, like that of a traditional urn. With this shape, cloisonne urns allow families to participate in the centuries of traditions that urns have inspired. The traditional urn's shape, for example, has brought forth a number of great literary works, including John Keats's "Ode to a Grecian Urn," which classically relates the unique décor of almost every funeral urn ever made to mankind's eternal struggles with mortality. (That poem, by the way, is said to not be about one particular urn, so it could very well apply to a cloisonne urn as to any other style of urn.) The timeless production process make cloisonne urns are a fine, popular choice for people who want a beautiful, elegant, memorial that will assure a loved-one's memory will last for generations to come.
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