Survey on deterioration of exterior coating material of Itsukushima Shrine
As part of the Survey Research on Traditional Restoration Materials and Synthetic Resins project, the Center for Conservation Science and Restoration Techniques is conducting a survey on the deterioration of exterior coating material of Itsukushima Shrine. The Itsukushima Shrine is widely known for its beauty with its contrast of a vermilion shrine pavilion floating in a blue sea, but the building is exposed to a severe environment because it is in contact with seawater. And an issue raised by the relevant persons is that the vermilion exterior coating material has become black in a relatively short time. The Center for Conservation Science and Restoration Techniques tried to identify the cause of this blackening phenomenon in the laboratory, also created hand-plate specimens coated with a large amount of the past exterior coating materials which were conceivably used for Itsukushima Shrine, and installed them on the actual floor of shrine and to the pillars which are in contact with the sea surface on May 13 (see Photos 1 and 2). We will perform an exposure test in the environment of Itsukushima Shrine for at least one year and observe the deterioration of exterior coating materials. We will use the results to maintain the exterior coating of Itsukushima Shrine pavilion in as good a status as possible.