NECKPIECE, 1981, WON HO CHONG, COLLECTION OF THE POWERHOUSE MUSEUM, SYDNEY. PHOTO: SOTHA BOURN – TAASA Review September 2011
UNLOCK THIS ARTICLE
This article was originally found in the September 2011 edition of TAASA Review (Volume 20, Issue 3, Page 27).
The full article is available for free to TAASA Members.Register
The silver-grey colour seen on the neckpiece is an alloy of copper and silver called shibuichi in Japanese, and is also known as misty or hazy silver.
Shibuichi, or `a quarter’, is so named as the silver conventionally amounts to 25% of the alloy’s composition.
Just as with shakudo/ odong, there are colour variations in shibuichi, such as a light variant that contains a high amount of silver, and a dark variant that contains copper, silver and gold (Oguchi 1983: 125 and O’Dubhghaill & Jones 2009: 291). In brief, the traditional process of creating these alloys involves melting the copper in a carbon crucible, and adding the desired quantity of gold and/or silver...