KIN SUM (SAMMY) LI is an assistant professor in the Department of History at Hong Kong Baptist University. He is currently writing a book and several other articles on the art history of ancient Chinese bronze mirrors and the history of mass production. [email@example.com]
In approximately 300 bce, a new method was developed in the design and manufacturing technologies of the bronze mirror production industry in China that changed the ways in which producers cast mirrors. This article utilizes four mirrors as examples to illustrate this method, and hypothesizes an invention termed the component-model method of mirror manufacturing. Multiple transfers were performed on models and molds applied at different stages of the production process. The method was devised to satisfy the burgeoning needs of a growing number of consumers while catering to the requirements of the diverse decorative patterns on different mirrors.