water gilding

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The technique of adhering precious metal leaf to a gesso or bole ground that is moistened with water before each leaf is laid. It is employed for a wide variety of purposes including fine quality picture frames and decorative work, illuminated manuscripts, the decoration of book covers, and the gilding on tempera panel paintings. Unlike mordant gilding, water gilding can be burnished to a high degree of finish.

Subjects: Art.

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