taking form jade studio




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Peter Schilling
Taking Form Jade Studio
411A Highland Av. #319
Somerville, MA 02144-2516


Jade is harder than steel, about as hard as the mineral quartz, so it can only be cut by abrasion. While electric motors and modern abrasives speed the process, patience is still the byword.

My carving technique combines modern and ancient methods. Diamond saws and grinders begin the process, roughing out the forms. This is followed by finer grinding, refining, and sanding using the “loose grit” or mud carving method invented by Chinese carvers 7000 years ago. Rotating metal, wood, or plastic tools cut jade by means of a muddy slurry of abrasive grit and water. Hand sanding and stoning with abrasive blocks and water help perfect critical details and surfaces the rotary tools cannot.

These steps are then followed by final sanding and polishing with diamond powder in an oily base which is applied to rotating wood, leather, and hard felt tools.