LACQUER Across the Oceans: Independent Invention or Diffusion? is a comprehensive history of Mexican lacquer, its technology and materials, presented within the historical events of the nation. This book brings to light new information on the lacquer technology of Mexico and its direct link to Asian lacquerware, technology, materials, and decorative styles. Evidence points to its introduction to Mesoamerica by Asian travelers of long ago, and not the product of coincidental, parallel development, or introduction by Europeans. To support these comparisons and conclusions the author traveled to lacquer centers in Mexico, China, Japan, and Thailand. LACQUER Across the Oceans: Independent Invention or Diffusion? presents for the fist time evidence of the possible origin of lacquer traced to the prehistoric people of Turkestan. It gives a detailed description of resin lac and insect lac, and for the first time gives a step-by-step description of the similarities of Japanese Kanshitsu dry lacquer and maize-stalk, the pre-Colombian Mexican dry lacquer.
Celia Heil Cultural Anthropologist; Born in Mexico City. As a member of the National Science Foundation staff I was part of the 1979-1980 United States Antarctic Research Expedition: first Mexican woman to the South Pole. I specialize in research of transpacific, pre-Columbian contacts of Asia and the Americas. Particularly conduct studies of the P'urhépecha culture of Michoacán, on the west coast of Mexico and their possible cross-cultural, pre-Columbian, transpacific connection with the cultures of East and Southeast Asia. For several years I was Program coordinator for Folklife Programs and Cultural studies for the Smithsonian Institution. I have traveled extensively throughout Mexico, the United States, Europe, New Zealand, Asia and Southeast Asia, and for a year lived in Australia.