Tools and Methods of Ivory Carving

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					The ancient art form of ivory carving into articles of use and decoration
has continued into the 21st century. Even though due to poaching and
illegal procurement of elephant ivory there is a permanent ban on it, the
replacement ivory that is used-mammoth ivory is now in vogue. The real
reason of its popularity includes:* Mammoth ivory is pure ivory which is
legal as the animals (woolly mammoths) have been extinct for the past
10,000 years.*Mammoths are considered to be ancestors of the modern
elephants and thus this ivory resembles elephant ivory in color, texture
and luster.* Due to its large availability in Siberia and Arctic regions,
ivory carvings are in demand with art connoisseurs and sculptors.Since
the ancient eras, ivory has been a prized possession due to its fine
grain, smooth texture and the delicate luster. From the ancient Chinese,
Egyptians, Indian and Japanese, ivory has been a prized commodity and
used to craft both decorative and utility items. Even in the West, ivory
carvings can be traced to prehistoric times all though the Roam eras and
renaissance to the Baroque period to current time. Tools Used for Ivory
CarvingTill about the late 19th century and early 20th century, the
common tools used for carving ivory included chisel, axe, bucksaw and the
float. The chisel was used to remove the outer bark of the tusk. To cut
the long tusk into smaller pieces, a bucksaw was used. For paring, float
was utilized and the tools for ivory carving included fretsaw, hand
chisels and gauges.There was certain evolution in the art of sculpting
mammoth ivory with the advent of new technology of power driven rotary
saws. These fine saws are used for peeling and cutting ivory while the
drills used by dentists help to carve miniature aspects of figurines.
Mammoth ivory items have been found for eons in the Intuit inhabited
regions in Arctic where the permafrost has held carcasses of innumerable
mammoths. From carving pieces of art to items of utility such as bow
drills, harpoon heads, pipes, bucket handles, needle cases to elaborate
decorative items, carving ivory is a passion for some.Ivory carving has
taken a different form with scrimshaws. These decorative walrus tusks,
whale teeth and short mammoth tusks are etched with fine details and
elegant curving patterns of fine details and lines are in vogue with
ivory collectors and art connoisseurs. To enhance the color of ivory
carving stains and lacquer was used for enhancing the total look of the
art piece. The ivory was also used for inlay work in wood and metal.

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