You may notice some shops are decorated with blue theme pots and vases in Iran. Different charming designs which are mostly plants and birds especially peacocks on them may grab your attention and make you gaze at them deeply. As well as having rich art and being gorgeous, the more you watch them, the calmer you get by the combination of amazing colours on it.
Minakari is an art, as old as 1500 years BC and first originated in Persia. Chardin the famous French explorer who visited Iran in Safavid time, has mentioned his observations about this admirable art. It’s one of the most popular handicrafts of the country and you can find a large collection of the products in Naqshe Jahan square in Isfahan which is the center of this art in Iran.
The pots are usually made of copper but in the past, Minakari was applied on gold and silver too. Here’s an abstract of how artists and artisans create these eye-catching pots.
First, the pot is glazed and turns into shiny white color by heating them in furnaces with 700°c temperature. After this step, it’s ready to be designed with different colours. In the past all colours were natural but nowadays they use combination of metal oxide powders with glycerin and Arabic gum. There’s a background colour, usually blue or turquoise, then they draw various shapes on it with a pen. The colours can be removed easily when the pen moves and slides on pot’s surface.
Next, they dip brush’s head in the colour with a little water and drag it on carved designs. We don’t have any white colour in Minakari so if some parts should be white, they don’t put any color on them. At this step, it’s ready to go into furnaces, usually with 400-500°c temperature and the colours will be fixed on the pot.
If you notice more Mina products in the shops, you’ll see Mina art can be applied on other objects too. You can find it on boxes, pen cases, keychains, jewelry and etc.
In conclusion, the colourful world of art is very attracting and as you walk more in it, you’ll discover more touching, relaxing beauties. The Mina handicraft is one of the best and most suitable gifts and souvenirs of Iran.
Karkas Mountains, Natanz, Isfahan Province, Iran
Tehran Province, Iran
Qeshm, Hormozgan Province, Iran
Zaman Khan, Saman, Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari Province, Iran
Tabriz, East Azerbaijan Province, Iran
Larak Island, Qeshm , Iran
Band Yakhchal, Iran