Etymology:  French, from past participle of cloisonner to partition: of, relating to, or being a style of enamel decoration in which the enamel is applied and fired in raised cells (as of soldered wires) on a usually metal background.

Source:  Merriam-Webster Dictionary.

Cloisonné is a unique Chinese art form that originated in China's capital, Beijing, during the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368). The art was later perfected in the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) when the highest power, the Emperor of China who had an artistic sense, asked his artisans to improve the technique. During this time, the most popular colour was a blue called Jing Tai Blue which was most often paired with white.

The techniques and intricacies of Cloisonné production reached its pinnacle during the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). With new technologies available, the colours where limitless, and the materials became more workable, thus the scale of the items manufactured ranged from Opium snuff bottles to tables and chairs.

The process of making Cloisonné has multiple operations. It is an artistic combination of metal working (brass/bronze) and porcelain ware. Below is a summary of the process.



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