Frédéric Faggionato Seirei "Dragonfly" Pétrarque Fountain Pen (placeholder photo - not my photo)
This fountain pen was made by Frédéric Faggionato in France. Frédéric passed away January 2, 2𝟢𝟣𝟫 and the worldwide bespoke fountain pen community is the worse for his absence. Of course, we were also blessed with his remarkable craftsmanship during his far too short life.
Here is what Frédéric wrote regarding this pen (with my clarifications in parenthesis):
"This Fountain Pen is a Pétrarque (the model name) turned from Ebonite (the base material). This luxury fountain pen is lacquered using the Japanese Seirei-Nuri or 'Dragonfly' technique. (Japanese Urushi work dates back 12,000 years).
First, the ebonite is prepared with several layers of Urushi (a lacquer from Wajima, Japan) that has been mixed with clay. Hardening time is required between each layer to sand.
Urushi is applied in several layers with a brush. Dozens of hours of work - spread over several weeks - are needed because of the very long drying and hardening time required for each layer before the next can be added. Hardening is done in a hardening cabinet; combining heat and humidity according to precise values.
Each layer of Urushi must be sanded before the next layer is added. This sanding must be done very carefully to avoid sanding through to the layer of Urushi beneath. The many layers of Urushi create a perfect base to apply the powders used in the Seirei technique.
The pen surface is polished with oil and mildly abrasive powder. It is then cleaned and put to rest for the next stage: The realization of the decoration.
A tray of water is prepared. A syringe filled with a mixture of Urushi and alcohol is injected into this bath. The pressure of the jet diffuses like a mesh in the water and it is at this moment that the parts of the pen are dipped into the bath. They then are carefully removed using a special technique so that the Urushi mixture forms a sticky pattern on the parts.
Powders are then spread across pen parts with a brush. The parts are then stored in the curing cabinet for several additional days.
Japanese finish lacquers are then applied through another time intensive process of applying lacquer, curing, buffing with oil and abrasive powder, and repeating. When the craftsman thinks he has the desired effect, he does the final polishing with the palm of his hand.
Lastly, the pen is equipped with a 14ct gold nib with an ebonite feed ... and voila!"
We will miss your artistry, Master Faggionato. I am honored to own you beautiful work. Repose en paix.