In the Footsteps of Lost Technologies- Cloisonné enamel

Date: 23 Dec. 2013 – 30 April 2015

Museum: Museum of Georgia

Georgian National Museum invites you at the presentation of the project "Revival of Lost Technologies- Cloisonné enamel" and screening of the documentary movie. Exhibition will be held in the frames of the week dedicated to the 150th anniversary of Ekvtime Takaishvili and it takes place on 23rd of December 2013.

According to historical sources, it may be said that this most beautiful variety of precious metalwork originated in the second century AD and lasted until the middle of the fifteenth century. It was spread throughout two countries, Byzantium and Georgia. Only later, in the eleventh century, did it spread from this area to KievanRus'.

After the fifteenth century the technology of making cloisonné enamel was lost and we no longer come across objects made using this technique.

A project led by ErmileMaghradze entitled ‘In the Footsteps of Lost Technologies: Cloisonné Enamel' was initiated by the Georgian National Museum by the financial support of UNESCO.

The technological processes described in these treatises were studied as part of this project, and all those tools were reconstructed that would have been needed by medieval workshops to make cloisonné enamel.

As this project progressed, archaeological material was studied in parallel with various other activities, thus lending greater plausibility to research work.

In this respect the discovery of a conical iron hood with apertures, together with its plate, on the territory of historical Colchis, specifically, during the archaeological digs on the site of the former town of Vani in 1966, represents an important scientific find.

After the reconstruction of the enamelling hood described in Theophilus's treatise and experiments carried out on it, it became possible to determine the function of this hood. Many experiments undertaken in this direction showed that the ‘Colchian hood' was a tool for goldsmith work, used by the ancient Colchians in the early classical period for soldering operations on precious metals.The crowning stage of the ‘In the Footsteps of Lost Technologies: Cloisonné Enamel' project is a copy of a cloisonné enamel medallion of Saint Simon the Apostle from the Khakhulitriptych icon of the All-Holy Mother of God, which was made by ErmileMaghradze, the project leader, using tools which had been prepared as part of this project. 

Address: Simon Janashia Museum of Georgia,  3 Shota Rustaveli Avenue