Flake White and Cremnitz White
by, December 11, 2011 at 03:34 PM (2317 Views)
The term 'flake white' originated from the fact that when basic lead carbonate is made according to the old Dutch method or 'stack process,' it falls off the metallic pieces of lead as 'flakes.' This is not the case when lead white is made according to modern processes, which is the pigment type used by all artists' paint manufacturers today.
You can read more flake white in this article:
Stack Process White Lead—Historical Method of Manufacture
The term 'flake white' as used by most artists' materials manufacturers today for their white oil paint designates a paint made by grinding basic lead carbonate ground in a vegetable drying oil (linseed, walnut or safflower oil) with a small amount of zinc oxide.
The term 'Cremnitz white' erroneously originated from the designation of basic lead carbonate manufactured in Klangenfurt, Austria, in the 18th and 19th centuries according to a process similar but not identical to the 'stack process.' The lead used in manufacturing lead white in Klangenfurt came from galena mines in the vicinity of Krems (in the state of Carinthia, Austria) and hence the names Kremsweiss, Kremserweiss, Krems White, Kremser White, and the erroneous attributions Cremnitz White or Kremnitz White. This is noted by the report of the Consulate General of the United States, Edmund Jussen, in Vienna in 1887:
Source: Edmund Jussen, "White Lead Industry of Austria," Reports from the consuls of the United States, Issues 81-84, United States. Bureau of Foreign Commerce, General Printing Office, 1887, p. 413.Kremserweiss (Kremser white)... bears this name because at some remote period an excellent quality of white lead was manufactured at Krems, a small and ancient city in Lower Austria. At present no white lead whatever is manufactured at Krems, and dealers here assert that for at least one hundred and fifty years no white lead has been produced at Krems. The industry of the city has for a long time been confined to the manufacture of hardware, mustard, and vinegar; but the best quality of white lead still bears the name of "Kremserweiss."
"Cremnitz" weiss, or white, is an appellation unknown to the trade here, and doubtless originated in the similarity of the two names of Krems and Cremnitz (or Kremnitz). Kremnitz (or Cremnitz) is a small city (population, 8,550) in the Bars Comitat in Hungary, and I am informed by Austrian dealers that no white lead whatever is manufactured there. ...white lead has never been manufactured at Kremnitz in any quantity whatever. Mr. Henry Sterne, United States consul at Budapest, informs me further that the Hungarian dealers in white lead state that no white lead is manufactured at Kremnitz, and that Kremserweiss, but not Kremnitzerweiss, is known in the Hungarian market.
The term 'Cremnitz white' as used by most artists' materials manufacturers today for their white oil paint is for a paint made by grinding basic lead carbonate ground in a vegetable drying oil (linseed, walnut or safflower oil) without the addition of zinc oxide.
As a further note, for why the use of zinc oxide is not a good practice in oil painting, please read the article:
Zinc White—Problems in Oil Paint?