Lattice working (Moshabbak) is a kind of decorative work which is performed on the surface of metals like gold, silver, copper and etc. Moshabbak means making holes. This word has been derived from Arabic infinitive of Shabaka and it means lattice work. Like other methods which are applied in metal industries, the antiquity of this artistic style goes back to the human’s first experiences related to metals like iron and copper. Since primitive men found the formability of these metals, they could create lasting works by the aid of their talent and creativity.
Nowadays, lattice working or metal inlaid working is more prevalent in Esfahan and Tehran. It is done in the manner that after selecting metal plate proportional to the type of artistic work which he wants to make, the craftsman divides it into definite parts then he transfers the design on the metal surface by design copy maker. In order to prevent it from being wiped during the cutting, he embosses the main lines on the metal surface by semi-shape steel chisel. This action, in addition to keeping the design, causes that jigsaw moves easily on the designed lines. In the next step, based on the thickness of used sheet and delicacy of design, a jigsaw proportional to the cut point is used. Sheets which are used for lattice working can have different thicknesses such as 8mm sheet and thinner, 1mm sheet, 2mm sheet and etc. Those parts of the design which must be cut, first are drilled by a drill so that the jigsaw can pass through it. Having cut the pieces, prepared pieces are filled and washed and put beside each other based on the original design. Different products are made and decorated by this method, but since proper space ought to exist for sawing, lattice working is done more on flat surfaces and in the next steps these pieces are riveted together in order to make the desired object. Different kinds of metal boxes, boards, censers, and the pieces installed on entrance doors and metal blades on mourning flags are made by this method.
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