The turquoise pigment of A Panorama of Rivers and Mountains
From Dragon Boat Festival wonderful swim to underwater luoshen to apsaras, in the traditional culture of the elements of the re-creation of the work is often out of the circle, and the latest out of the circle is a New Year’s eve dance B station – “Only this green”.Through the dancers’ interpretation, the famous painting “A Panorama of Rivers and Mountains” moved, so that Wang Ximeng’s song Dynasty river and mountains vividly walked in front of the audience.And the dancers in the dance, hair towering, wearing green long skirts, the classical beauty of Oriental women fully revealed.In fact, one of the important reasons why “A Thousand Miles of Rivers and Mountains” can still show delightful colors after thousands of years is that many of the natural pigments used in the painting are precious stones, among which “blue” can be regarded as the “top match” aesthetically in both The East and the West. It is handmade with top lapis lazuli stone.There was a time when you couldn’t buy an ounce of bluish gold with an ounce of gold, and it wasn’t until 1960 that a genius artist invented an alternative, klein Blue, that swept the fashion houses of 2021.Lapis lazuli was the eyeshadow of Cleopatra. As early as 6,000 years ago, Afghans began mining lapis lazuli as a treasure.Until the 18th century, the world’s lapis lazuli came from a single valley in Badakhshan, Afghanistan.Its unchanging natural color made it a special gift for ancient royal families. Egyptian Kings and Sumer queens used lapis lazuli as a symbol of their “chosen son” status.Lapis lazuli was imported from Afghanistan as early as 2500 BC to be used in the tombs of the Kings. For a long time, lapis lazuli was made into rings, seals and other objects because it was soft and easy to carve.The use of lapis lazuli as a pigment is believed to date back to the 6th and 7th centuries BC, when it was used on murals in the Bamiyan region of Afghanistan.Legend has it that Cleopatra used celestine to decorate her eyes, just as modern people use eye shadow.The egyptians’ use of lapis is also confirmed by an artifact dating from 1300 BC: the mask of King Tutankhamun had lapis lazuli inset with gemstones, and the eyebrows and eyeliner were painted with lapis lazuli. It is possible that Cleopatra also followed the tradition of using lapis lazuli for makeup.The price of lapis lazuli as a dye was too high for ordinary painters to afford, so another blue dye, azurite, also appeared.Although azurite also has a pleasing blue color, its texture is less stable than that of azurite, which oxidizes, turns green, or blackens over time, making it an ideal mineral for a blue pigment.Michelangelo’s Madonna of the Rocks was introduced to China along the Silk Road. Lapis lazuli was used earlier by Chinese people in song Dynasty paintings. Archaeologists once excavated a Yue Wang Jian of the Spring and Autumn Period, whose case was inlaid with blue-green gems.Gemologist appraisal found that this yue Wang Jian case inlaid jade for lapis lazuli on one side, turquoise on the other side.After Zhang Qian’s mission to the Western Regions in the 2nd century BC, lapis lazuli was exported to China as a national treasure of Afghanistan and became a favorite decoration of the upper classes.A gold inlaid beast inkstone inlaid with red coral, turquoise and lapis lazuli was unearthed from the tomb of King Liu Gong in Pengcheng of the Eastern Han Dynasty in Xuzhou.From the 1st century BC to the 3rd century AD, when the Silk Road was highly developed, Afghanistan was under the control of the powerful Kushan Empire.The kushan empire covered a vast area, including parts of Pakistan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan in addition to Afghanistan, and was connected to China through the Wakhan Corridor, through which precious stones, turquoise, glass, and luxury goods of the Persian Empire flowed in large quantities.Lapis lazuli is embedded in the gold necklace unearthed from the tomb of Li Jingxun, the most famous “Li Child” of the Sui Dynasty. A gold necklace of Persian style was unearthed from the tomb of Li Jingxun, and lapis lazuli is embedded in the gold necklace.The use of indigo gold as a pigment in China is closely related to the introduction of Buddhism.For example, lapis lazuli was used as blue pigment on murals and colored sculptures in dunhuang Mogao Grottoes and West Thousand Buddha Caves from the Northern Dynasty to the Qing Dynasty.And “A Thousand Miles of Rivers and Mountains” also uses green gold as a pigment to depict the clear waters and green mountains of the Song Dynasty, which still shines brightly after thousands of years.In Europe, with the rise of the Renaissance, the pigment “ultramarine” with lapis lazuli as the main raw material became the most popular color.Renaissance artist Senino Senini once described ultramarine as “a noble color, beautiful, the most perfect color”.The production method of ultramarine is very complicated. It needs to choose the best lapis lazuli stone, without golden impurities, and then grind it by hand, and then make it through multiple processes.Painters at that time also had a very strong demand for ultramarine, especially in the field of religious painting. A large number of painters used ultramarine to make prints and murals in churches, and used this pure and wuxi blue to represent the sky, angels and the garments of the Madonna.Interestingly, since most of the lapis lazuli was imported into Europe by the Venetians, it was rarely used outside Of Italy.By the 16th and 17th centuries, the price of green gold had become the most valuable item in Europe, surpassing gold for a long time.It was Dutch painter Vermeer who brought Qingqing from “heaven” to secular society.Although Vermeer was not a rich man, his wife’s family was relatively well-off, so vermeer had access to ultrashine while painting, and his love of the color led him to use ultrashine to the point of “extravagance”.In his masterpieces, such as Girl with a Pearl Earring and Maid Pouring Milk, he used a large area of indigo to present a rich aesthetic feeling.Vermeer’s Girl with a Pearl Earring Gemi Museum Got its start in Cyan Because of its high price, painters have been searching for the perfect substitute for cyan.The great writer Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe also played a part when he discovered blue deposits in a lime kiln near Palermo in Sicily.He thought that this blue precipitate might replace lapis lazuli as a decorative material, but Goethe did not propose using it as a pigment.In 1824, the French National Institute of Industry offered a reward of 6,000 francs for the invention of an alternative to indigo that artists could afford.Four years later, chemist Jean-Baptiste Gimey devised an alternative and won the 6,000 francs reward.And the cost of his synthetic ultramarine was 2,500 times less than that of natural ultramarine, giving him a fortune.But the color kimi invented was so common that it showed almost the same color in all kinds of light, so it was considered soulless, so the best painters still used ultrarue.But Jean-Baptiste’s son, Emile, benefited from his father’s profits. As a traveler and collector, Emile used the money he earned to buy foreign artifacts and set up a museum, Musee Gemi.The museum is also one of the most important Asian art museums in the world.In 1960, Yves Klein invented Klein Blue, which officially became the alternative to “Ultralue” and was known as “Ultralue Francaise” because of its similarity.Since then, the natural indigo dye has been gradually phased out of history and is rarely used except for the restoration of ancient paintings.The Gemi Museum grew out of Afghanistan’s lapis lazuli, and it gives back to Afghanistan’s artifacts.In 2006, a batch of national treasures from Afghanistan were unveiled in Paris, France. Since then, they have been on tour around the world.For more than 10 years, these precious cultural relics have been “relay protection” by various museums, and the Jimi Museum is the place where this “relay protection” began.