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The Colors Of Provence

プロヴァンスの色【オークル】 有害物質が含まない天然ピグメント

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オークルの歴史History of ocre
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オークルの歴史 History of ocre


Prehistory: For millennia, humans have beautified their world and expressed their thoughts by painting. The common characteristic is that paint consists of ground up pigment in some sort of liquid. When the liquid dries into a film, the ground pigment is stuck to the painting surface. The first paintings were cave paintings. Ancient peoples would decorate walls of protected caves with paint made from dirt or charcoal mixed with spit or animal fat. Their limited palette was produced from three basic colors: red, black and yellow. Reds, yellows, and browns came from the limonite and hematite (ochre and sienna), where a range from reddish brown to straw color is evident in the paintings. Blacks were derived from charcoal.  Ochre pigments constituted the basic palette of ancient artisans, from Egypt to India and China. The Minoans, attributed with inventing the fresco, mixed their pigments with water and applied them to a fresh lime surface. The technique requires pigments that bond permanently to lime. Ochre pigments, unaffected by alkalis, remain the basic palette of fresco painters, from the Minoans to the present.

Middle Ages and the Renaissance: Throughout the middle Ages and the Renaissance, mineral pigments continued to be used by painters. Like the Paleolithic cave dwellers, late medieval and Renaissance artists used natural chalks made from mineral pigments. Dug right out of the earth and shaped into sticks with knives, these chalks were ready for drawing. Natural red chalks, with their rich, warm color, were popular from about 1500 to 1900. Such artists as Michelangelo, Rembrandt and Antoine Watteau used this medium to produce some of the most coveted drawings in the world today.