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The Groundbreaking Liuli Treasure Vase Collection - Emergence of the Dragon

Part 2 of the Groundbreaking Liuli Treasure Vase Collection

Over five years ago, LIULI’s studios released “Dancing Blooms, Flying Fish, Spring Lights Converge,” a collection of dazzling treasure vases that had never before been seen in the art world.  Using pioneering techniques in glasswork, artisans expressed movements and colors that most could only imagine in dreams.  Groundbreaking as it was, the collection of dancing flowers and goldfish was simply the first step to a greater calling in contemporary liuli art.

“Emergence of the Dragon,” releasing in the U.S. today, stands out as the apex of strength and spirit in the mastery of the liuli art form.  As Part 2 of the treasure vase repertoire, the new collection brings to light new techniques, and refines old ones.

Much like the first generation of bao pings (treasure vases) the dragon bao pings combine mouth-blowing with pate-de-verre, applying luminous sheets of gold and—newly introduced—silver foil.  The layers of complexity can be seen in the seven to nine layers of liuli in each piece.  Among the minute details are natural air bubbles, a life force that almost seem to rise with the power of the dragons.

Also inspired by the Chinese elemental forces of nature, the collection has a total of five pieces respective to each element—metal, wood, water, fire and earth.  Pervading the artworks is an aura containing dynamic movement and austere stillness.  Sharply contrasting feelings are complimented by sharply contrasting colors.  These vivid hues include jade greens and golden reds that come from the spirit of the seasons.

That yin-yang balance of explosions and calmness represents a power innate in Chinese philosophies and spirit.  Being both controlled and untamed, it is a raw form of strength that translates to an inner beauty.  That inner beauty is, in turn, protected with thousands of years of traditions and culture—a motif represented by the bao ping.  And only with twenty-eight years of hard-earned labor and practice can such an expression emerge from LIULI art.  Thus, emerging from the fantastically imaginative studios of LIULI is “Emergence of the Dragon,” a force to be reckoned with.

 

Photo Gallery (Click to Enlarge):

Click to Enlarge: Eternal Peace Baoping

Click to Enlarge: Ethereal Chime Baoping

 Click to Enlarge: Fiery Illumination Baoping

Click to Enlarge: Dragon Rising Baoping

Click to Enlarge: Heavenly Exaltation Baoping

Click to Enlarge: Eternal Peace Baoping

Click to Enlarge: Ethereal Chime Baoping

Click to Enlarge: Fiery Illumination Baoping

Click to Enlarge: Dragon Rising Baoping

Click to Enlarge: Heavenly Exaltation Baoping

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Artist/Founder Loretta H. Yang leads a team of experienced artisans to create arts that honor the richness of cultural heritage and value.

Step No. 1: Design and sculpting

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Step 2 of the process involves coating our original clay sculpture in silicone. Layer after layer (3 to 7 layers) is fastidiously coated to produce a negative mold, a crucial step in capturing the prevision of the sculpture. Each layer must dry completely before additional layer is applied, thickness must be uniform to prevent leakage of wax. Once complete, the clay is removed to reveal a negative silicone mold.

Step No. 2: Silicone molding

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Pour molten wax into the negative silicone mold.

Step No. 3: Infusion of molten wax. Fill wax into a negative mold.

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Once wax has solidified and cooled, release the wax form by carefully peeling back the silicone mold. Like a butterfly molting, the silicon is shed to reveal a positive wax form.

Step No. 4: Shedding of silicon mold to obtain the wax form

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A careful refinement of the wax sculpture. Because every microinch and subtlety plays its own role in the grand scheme of beauty. Our artists refine the wax mold to its final perfection.

Step No. 5: Wax form refinement; removing imperfections

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The wax mold is placed on a wooden plank in a metal container and plaster is poured and solidified. Embedding wax form with fire-resistant plaster.

Step No. 6: Coating the wax sculpture with plaster to form a refractory mold

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Wax is steamed out of the plaster under high heat yielding a negative plaster mold.

Step No. 7: Removal of wax with steam—the essence of the “lost-wax” process

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Liuli ingredients are created through unique firing and processing of glass. Color and size appropriate pieces are placed within the plaster and fired.

Step No 8: Choosing color; kiln firing

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Fire and melt. Under intense heat, a new vision of transparency and clarity is born.

Step No. 9: Re-firing at 1,400 degrees Celsius

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Extreme patience and care are necessary when removing the plaster to prevent damage.

Step No. 10: Removal of plaster mold

When the art pieces emerge, our masters step in to carefully chip away the plaster mold. Like excavating fragile archaeological relics, one false move and you're left with broken shards.

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First comes die-cutting - smoothing the crystal down to the last microinch. Rough polish, removal of excess support, refinement and fine surface polish with a high-speed fabric wheel.

Step No. 11: Retouching of details; burnishing and polishing

Our artist refines and re-polishes each and every detail yet again.

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An etched number on the base of each piece indicates its limited edition and reminds us to never stop creating. After the engraving - an official LIULI artwork is born.

Step No.12: Final inspection; etching of serial number; packaging