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Copper Artisans of Caucasus

September 22, 2012

Yesterday we made an exciting trip to Azerbaijani village named Lahic. Located on the southern mountain slopes of Caucasus this place is well-known for its handicrafts especially copper items production. Lahic was established in the IV century and since then traditions of copper craft were passed from generation to generation.

The road to Lahic is an adventure itself. At first we were driving on a nice highway enjoying views of green mountains and forests but at some point the asphalted part has finished and our car was slowly crawling on the edge of precipice.

lahic

lahic

Finally we arrived to Lahic. We were so happy  to get out of the car and to start exploring the town. Passing by the main street you can hear the “tuc tuc” sound of hammers used by copper-smiths.

lahic

 

Having entered the workshop of one of them we saw a wide range of different copper products (vases, jugs, lamps, jewelry boxes) and also could watch the process of producing them:

copper artisan

We talked to this master and discovered that he is a copper-smith in the sixth generation. Each craftsman has his own secrets of technology and decoration patterns which he will pass only to his sons .

coppersmith

All items are purely handmade. The process starts from transforming a piece of copper into a thin sheet by putting it on fire and several man knocking on it with hammers. Than this sheets turns into object – bowl, plate, jug, etc. The last stage is to put ornament. The most popular motifs are Surahs from Koran, Buta (traditional Azeri pattern) and flowers.  Lahic production is very durable and can last at least for a century. In the shops we also saw many copper things imported from India but immediately you can differentiate them from local. Lahic products are much heavier and their colour is rose meanwhile Indian pieces are yellow and light. Due to the fact that all Lahic items are handmade you will not be able to find two objects with the same pattern, each of them is unique and has a high artistic value.

copper-jugcopper-bowl

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