What is Lacquerware?

Lacquerware are objects, small as well as large, and papier-mache articles decoratively covered with lacquer. As Oxford Dictionary defines it, lacquer is a liquid made of shellac dissolved in alcohol, or synthetic substances. It dries to form a hard protective coating for wood, metal etc.

Available at Delhi:- Cottage Industries Emporium, Kashmir Emporium, Dilli Haat

Besides, lacquerware includes a number of different objects. These include tableware, containers, furniture and coffins, among others.

In addition, China, Japan and India are the most prominent countries with long traditions of this ancient craft. Moreover, their lacquered objects are extensively popular for rich colour, aesthetic designs and perfect finish.

Salar Jung Museum in Hyderabad, Telangana, is one of the few Indian museums boasting a good collection of lacquered objects.

Indian Lacquerware

Indian lacquer or Lac turnery is around 400 years old. ‘Aaine Akbari’ written by Abul Fazl in 1590 A.D. has the very first mention of Lac in the Indian history. It documents the administration of the Mughal Empire under Emperor Akbar.

Further, skilled artisans practice ornamental lacquering in various forms. These include Abri or cloud work, Atishi or fire work, Nakshi or pattern work and Tin foil decoration.

Some popular lacquerware products from India are boxes, tobacco jars and ash trays, round plates, jewel boxes and trays from Kashmir. Moreover, furniture articles of Banaganapalli (Andhra Pradesh) and Gujarat are well-known lacquerware products too.

Available at Delhi:- Cottage Industries Emporium, Kashmir Emporium, Dilli Haat


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