Where did colour come from?

Colour maker Laura Daza explores the origin of colour by transforming raw materials into eight ancient pigments.

Colombian designer Laura Daza is a colour hunter and maker, which quite simply means that she sources and creates colour from her natural environment. In Colour Provenance, she searches for a deeper meaning in everyday colours by exploring the ancient roots of pigment.

For Daza, the project is an in-depth investigation into “how colour was once sourced, crafted and utilised in the past.” By tracing primitive rituals, the designer uses age-old alchemic techniques to transform raw materials into eight ancient colours, which spark an interesting discourse around the origin of colour.
“There was a time when the story of origin was integral to colour identity, the narrative of provenance possessing a power and a sense of magic,” writes Daza.
Colour Provenance encourages us to take a closer look as each colour reveals its own story. Did you know that malachite green is considered to be the first green ever used by humans?
For each pigment created, Daza designed a colour-coordinated vessel, also handmade from raw materials, to artistically display and enhance the colours. To highlight the transformation into mineral form, selected colours are showcased with their raw material.
The DIY Colour Recipe Book documents Daza’s work in a narrative that tells the story of the complete Colour Provenance palette, revealing how each colour was made, the individual origins of the pigments, the tools used in the manufacturing process and the archaic recipes and methods for creating colour. Daza hopes the book will inspire a new appreciation for and understanding of colour.

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