Friday, 01 December 2023

Spoon Making Art in Konya

In Anatolia, the first spoon was found in Çatalhöyük and Hacılar. (7-6 thousand years BC). Spoons are named according to the material from which they are made in Anatolia. First the groins made of earth, then they began to be made of wood and mine. Wooden spoons are mostly made of trees such as boxwood, juniper, hornbeam, oak, pear, elm, metal spoons, iron, copper, brass, silver and gold. Among the centers famous for spoons in Anatolia, Konya, Akseki, Kas and Bolu can be mentioned.

It is well known that it was a significant area of art in Konya throughout the Seljuk and Ottoman periods. Additionally, throughout the Ottoman Period, Konya spoons were consistently in demand in the regions nearby as well as in Syria, Egypt, Tunisia, and Algeria.

Spoon making is carried out in a small workshop or room. Spoon making tools: Saw, adz, jack plane, rasp, sandpaper, eğdi (wood carving tool), knife, scraper, triangular-flat file.

Spoons should be cut from the knotless parts of the specified trees and these parts should be approximately 35 cm long. The cut wedges are slit vertically and cut into a draft by chipping. Then it is cut into the shape of a spoon using jack plane. The tip of the spoon's handle should be in line with the tip of the mouth. Then the spoons are smoothed with rasp and sandpaper and polished.

After the spoon is made and sanded, ruan (varnish) is applied. Ruan is a kind of clear varnish applied on a wooden spoon. Linseed oil is mixed with pine resin and boiled in a special cauldron, after it comes to a consistency, it is cooled and spread on spoons in layers. If embroidery is to be done on spoons, primer is applied first and varnish after drying.

Embroidery is done on the bowl and handle parts of the dried spoons. Generally, floral motifs such as daisy, rose, hyacinth, carnation, tulip, triple flower branches and medallions and architectural structure depictions are made inside the mouth part. Words of wisdom and poems are included in the handle parts.

Different types of spoons were produced in Konya. These; such as soup, rice, dessert, meal, milk pudding spoons. We can also put diverse types of ladles in the spoon group. It is also known that dancing spoons, which are a part of Konya tradition, are being made today in addition to decorative souvenir spoons.

Spoon cases are also manufactured in the art of spoon crafting. These are more common in villages. These are made in the form of wooden boxes or cloth bags in which spoons are placed and protected. Spoon cases have wooden engravings or painted decorations on them. There are different ornamental motifs on them.

Technology has supplanted handcrafting in many other areas, including spoon production. There were a lot of spoon factories in Konya in the 1940s, and the city produced between 150 and 200 thousand spoons yearly on average. The spoons produced were sent to foreign countries, Yemen, and Hejaz. Today, there is no spoon shop. Only in souvenir stores can you get plain, non-handmade spoons.