If you know a Bosnian, you also know that they love coffee and drink it as if it is water. The flavor of our delicious coffee is not the only reason we enjoy it so much. The quality time that is spend with our friends and family during that time is truly what makes the coffee so sweet.
The unique handcrafted copper plate is what the coffee is typically served on.
The use of copper for kitchenware and containers made of this metal is safe to hold food due to the tin lining, which is very resistant to organic acids. Copper objects were part of the normal endowment of Muslim households and, starting in the early 19th century, also of Christian households, so that in addition to their utilitarian qualities they also acquired aesthetic functions. The Ottoman art of copper-working reached the peak of refinement between the 17th and the 19th century, when the main schools were those based in Istanbul, in the Caucasus and in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
I find them beautiful as a wall decoration, the patterns have a symbolic essence to them. Find your own personal function for these plates which will add a special touch to your home.
The engraved, silver-plated and treated copper plates that I brought from Sarajevo were made by Mirsad Brkanić. Mirsad’s craftmanship stands out among all standardized pieces. His embossed and chiseled figures have a monumental quality about them and an expressive immediacy.
Mirsad Brkanić carries on a family tradition that he is now passing on to his children. He never talks while he is teaching them. More than words, he says, what counts is to watch and understand, to learn the correct positions of the hands, the pressure to be applied to the hammer and the attention to be paid to the mark one is about to make. Mirsad Brkanić also pays special attention to the tin-plating stage: if the plating is applied by hand it will last for 30 or 40 years, while if it is electrolytic it will have to be repeated more often.
Since copper and silver tarnish in time, if a protective patina is not desired, preferring to let the object shine naturally, it will have to be polished regularly. A soft wire will be included with your purchase for the maintenance of the plate.
I am so thrilled to share these Bosnian artifacts with you because, they are a beautiful reminder of my heritage and it is an honor to share them with my community in the United States.
Now it's time to share a coffee with some good company.
Hajde na kafu!
A special thank you to the Brkanic family, Studio of Norbert Heyl for your intensive research and UNESCO for preserving the importance of authentic craftsmanship and encouraging artisans to continue producing traditional work.