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ANATOLIAN ART of METALWORKING
 

The development period of the art of Turkish metalworking starts from the Middle East and extends to Seljuk and Ottoman periods. The metal works of the Seljuk period have a prominent place in the collections displayed at museums around the world.

The material used by Anatolian Seljuks is mostly bronze and the few examples that survived to our day present the various forms applied with relief and embossing techniques. One of the examples of this period is the Mosque Lantern (1280) of Beyşehir Eşrefoğlu Mosque, displayed at Ethnography Museum of Ankara.

In the Artuqid period, bronze as a material was substituted by brass. Bronze works, silver and copper inlayed compositions created with the scraping technique and especially the examples of kufi script of this period are specifically important for the art of metalworking in the 12th and 13th Centuries.

The Early Ottoman Period is marked with the efforts to underline the Ottoman character via new forms and techniques. After the second half of the 15th Century, a common characteristic starts to emerge. One of the earliest examples representing the Ottoman character is the silver- and gold-gilded Mosque Lantern of Fatih Mosque, displayed at İstanbul Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts.

In the 16th Century, copper objects were produced along with silver works. Copper is the material most commonly used in the Ottoman art of metalworking.

Copper examples indicate curved branches with lotuses and palmettos on leaves. In this period, horizontal lines covering the base are one of the striking technical views of copper products. Various examples of this decoration are coffee trays designed with concentric geometric surfaces and the fish motif which was quite popular among Ottoman masters of metalworking.

Most of the products related to food and beverages are ornamented with “Mühr-i Süleyman” (Seal of Suleiman) at the centre (1). The origins of this hexagonal motif date back to ancient times. According to another belief, this motif is the symbol of strength.

Objects from the end of the 16th Century and the beginning of the 17th Century are mostly silver and of forms similar to those in the stoneware field. As a result of the constant quest of Ottoman masters for new and different forms, various objects originally designed in metal were produced with such examples as pitchers, tankards, decanters and censers. The decoration approach of the early period was continued in these years. Rich ornaments are seen especially on silver objects in the 17th Century.

However, the complete and harmonized organization in the ornamentation (tezhip) style – attributable to the presence of the palace school – is the attribute creating this richness. Beautiful examples of this rich ornamentation can be found today at İstanbul Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts with a censer resembling a şadirvan (water tank with a fountain) and a birdcage, where golden bronze is applied on silver, and a Silver Lectern (1618) of the tomb of Sultan I. Ahmet. The Silver Bakirdan (1698) displayed at the same museum is one of the latest examples of the period. With the development of trade with Europe, different attributes emerged in ornamentation and forms.

In the 18th Century, the ornamentation repertoire was completely changed with an increase in the number of works and a shift in materials to copper. Copper thus became an indispensable material for the Turkish kitchen by reason of its resemblance to silver upon tinning, easiness of cleaning and goodness for health. In the 17th Century, such naturalistic motifs as cypress, tulip and pomegranate were also included in ornamentations.

One of the most frequently used forms in Ottoman art of metalworking is the pitcher. Another form used in the 17th Century is the copper plate with an ornamentation focus wholly on side borders and an undecorated middle portion, sized with a diameter of 25-40 cm in general.

Although coffee trays were not altered in form, their ornamentations varied in centuries. The first examples of grinders, which are an important element of the Turkish coffee culture, were observed in the late 17th Century. Ornamented with leaves in the scrapping technique with a brass cylindrical body, grinders are also remarkable in their ethnographic elements by reason of the inscription of verses on coffee.

Another ornamentation technique frequently used in the 17th and 19th Centuries is the golden gilt named ‘Tombak’. This ornamentation is a form of gold-coating applied on copper or brass with mercuric oxide. In the 19th Century, attempts were made to use new forms in addition to classical ones. Tombak works on copper exemplified by censers on tripod trays indicate the radical change in the ornamentation.

The art of metalworking embraced different appearances in each century with changing forms, techniques and materials and the common feature of metal works is their modest and temperate taste.



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    Kapat
 

Source:Tarcan Yılmaz, “Maden Sanatı”, Yüzyıllar Boyunca Türk Sanatı,(ed.O.Aslanapa),s.72-80, İstanbul 1977
    E.Enginsoy, Turkish Metalwork, The Art and Architecture of Turkey, 1980
    Ü.Erginsoy, Türk Maden Sanatı, Başlangıcından bu güne Türk Sanatı,İş Bankası 342, 1993 
    Fulya Bodur, Türk Maden Sanatı : The Art of Turkish Metalworking, Türk Kültürüne Hizmet Vakfı Yayınları, İstanbul, 1987
    Traditional Turkish Arts. Metalwork and Jewellery, Woodwork, Kültür Bakanlığı Yayınları
    T Yılmaz, 16.yy Maden Sanatları, Antika,S.26, 1987
    T.Yılmaz, 17.yy Osmanlı Maden Sanatı, Sanat Tarihi Derneği Yayını 4, İstanbul 1998
    T.Yılmaz, Saray Mutfak Eşyaları, Sanat7, 1982
    T.Yılmaz, Topkapı Sarayı Müzesindeki Kabe Kilit ve Anahtarları, ICICA yayınları, İstanbul 1993
    Gündağ Kayaoğlu, Anadolu'da Türk Bakırcılık Sanatının Gelişimi: Bakır Yatakları, Üretimi ve Atölyeleri, Sandoz Kültür Yayınları, İstanbul 1988
    S.Özkan Savaş, Çivi Yazılı Belgeler Işığında Anadolu'da (İ.Ö.2. Bin Yılında) Madencilik ve Maden Kullanımı,Türk Tarih Kurumu Yayınları,Ankara, 2006
    Metal Vessels, Museum of Anatolian Civilizations, Kültür ve Turizm Bakanlığı Yayınları, İstanbul, 1992
    N. Ölçer, Turkische Metalkunst, Türkische Kunst und Kultur aus Osmanischer Zeit, 1985
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    Gündağ Kayaoğlu,Copper Ewers, Türkiye Turing ve Otomobil Kurumu, S66/345, 1980
    Gülgün Köroğlu, Anadolu Uygarlıklarında Takı, Türk Eskiçağ Bilimleri Enstitüsü Yayınları; İstanbul, 2004,
    Yıldız Akyay Meriçboyu, Antikçağ'da Anadolu Takıları, Akbank Yayınları
    Anadolu Medeniyetleri Müzesi, Antik Takılar, Kültür Bakanlığı Yayınları, Ankara, 1999
    Muhittin Binan, Ahşap Kapılar ve Metal Tamamlayıcı Elemanlar, YEM Yayınları,İstanbul, 1995
    G.Kürkman,M.Acara Eser,Ö.Bilgi,Y.Dağlı, Anatolian Weights and Measures, AKMED Yayınları, İstanbul, 2003
    Özlem Özkan, Askeri Müze Tombak Eserler Kataloğu, Askeri Müze Yayınları, İstanbul, 2001
    Fulya Eruz, Konuşan maden tombak ve gümüş madeni eserler koleksiyonu gilding copper (tombak) and silver metalwork collection,Yapı Kredi Yayınları
    S.Batur, Tombak Üzerine Bir Araştırma, Sanat dünyamız, S.31,1984
    G.Kongaz, Tombaklar, İstanbul 1985
    Sedat Alp, Konya Civarında Karahöyük Kazılarında Bulunan Silindir ve Damga Mühürleri, Türk Tarih Kurumu Yayınları,Ankara, 1994
    G.Sonat, Gümüşler, Topkapı Sarayı Müzesi, Sant, 7, 1982
    F. Egemen Engin, Mühür ve Mühürcülük Sanatımız (Üzerine Derlemeler), Arıtan Yayınevi, İstanbul 1994
    Joseph von Hammer - Purgstall, Osmanlı Mühürleri,Pera Yayıncılık, İstanbul, 1999
    Recep Yıldırım,Urartu İğneleri,Türk Tarih Kurumu Yayınları,Ankara , 1989,
   Osep Tokat, ‘Ermeni Gümüş Ustaları / Armenian Master Silversmiths’, Aras Yayıncılık, 2010

(1) Mühr-ü Süleyman motifi hk. geniş bilgi için bkz.
    Z.Kuşoğlu, Türk Motifinde Mühr-i Süleyman, İlgi, S.61, 1990
    N.Çam, Türk İslam Sanatlarında Altı Kollu Yıldız (Mühr-ü Süleyman), Selçuk Ünv.,Konya 1993
    T.Yılmaz, Saray Mutfak Eşyaları, Sanat7, 1982
    T.Yılmaz, Topkapı Sarayı Müzesindeki Kabe Kilit ve Anahtarları, ICICA yayınları, İstanbul 1993

 
     
 
 
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