Tools Of The Trade

(No.9, Vol.6,Nov-Dec 2016 Vietnam Heritage Magazine)

The next day, as the cast has cooled down, it is taken out of the pit, polished and transported to the customer.

Parts of the outer mould joint together around the inner form.

Funnels are set to pour the metal into the mould.

The mould done, the workers put metal into the cauldron to melt. Infernal heat.

As the cast metal melts, it is scooped into earthen vessels to be poured into the mould.

The work is hard and hot.

Pouring melted metal requires great care.

About 20km to the south of Danang, there is a famous, over-400-year-old traditional trade village.  This is the Phuoc Kieu bronze casting trade village of Dien Phuong Commune, Dien Ban District, Quang Nam Province. From copper and other metals the artisans of the village make everything from musical instruments (bells, gongs, and cymbals), to consecration utensils (thuribles, candlesticks, lamps, brass basins and altar statues). The job is difficult and tedious, because everything here is done by hand. But the villagers’ diligence and dexterity have made beautifully sophisticated products and won fame and love of domestic and foreign customers.

Text and Photos By Duong Thanh Xuan
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