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Re: Adhering paper to cloth for scrolls

On Mon, 13 Jan 1997, Dorothy Africa wrote:

Dear Dorothy,

Sounds like we saw the same film.  The odd part of the entire process is
that truly traditional scroll mounting technique must be redone each
generation to perserve the art that was mounted because it is not
archival.  Every thing has to be washed and rewashed to remove all the
traditional materials that would evenyually destroy the artwork.  The
system preserves the mounting guild more than the art.  Nice hostage
system eh?

>    A couple years ago I attended a lecture at the Peabody Museum in Salem
> Massachusetts which discussed the traditional methods for scroll mounting
> in Japan.  I can't recall every detail, but there were many.  Among the
> points of interest still in my mind was that the Japanese scroll mounters
> (and conservators) ferment their wheat paste for about ten years before
> using it.  This requires a cellar and a strong resistance to odors.  The
> speaker observed that this aging process allows the various moulds to eat
> whatever they want before the paste is used, producing a relatively sterile
> medium (like brussel sprouts at a Christmas party, I guess).  I also recall
> that there are something like sixteen different paper layers in a scroll
> mounting, with nearly as many different papers.  This, of course, depends
> on the size and weight of the item being mounted.  In addition to various
> sorts of pounding brushes used to meld the various layers, he described some
> other techniques including his favorite-he uses a set of rosary beads to
> smooth out his papers.
>   All in all it was an incredibly intricate process.  I wouldn't say "don't
> try it", but on the basis of what I heard I would say that those who want
> to try scroll mounts should be prepared to do a lot of experimenting and
> extensive reading.
>  Good luck to all!
>    Dorothy
> Dorothy C. Africa
> bookbinder, Harvard Law School Library
> africa@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx


     M I C H A E L   M O R I N                M.F.A., M.L.S.

Director Celtic Press               Instructional Media Librarian
  Buffalo  New York                  D'Youville College Library
         Co-Moderator Buffalo Free-Net Preservation SIG
    Member Buffalo Free-Net Information Development Committee

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