Here you find a real Tama-Ko design. Tama-Ko means copper in Nepal. All designs of Tama-ko are made by Shailendra Tamrakar, a coppersmith now in the age of 42 year and works since he is 15 as a copper smith. This art goes from generation to generation.
Through years of experience, he has specialized in restoring the copper parts of temples and is therefore much in demand.
He has worked on the restoration of the Deuti Baja Temple in Surkhet and the Santoshi Maata Temple in Rabibhawan. He also contributed to the 7-metre high Buddha statue of the Khachhedi Temple in Pharping and worked on the 50-metre high Padmasambhava Statue in Bhutan.
Many traditional kitchen utensils in Nepal are made of copper (or bronze or brass). Copperware has traditionally been highly valued for its durability and because it is believed to provide valuable health benefits. Drinking water in a copper vessel contributes to good health. Traditional wedding gifts in Nepal are still household utensils made of copper, brass or bronze. A Newari always likes to display these gifts in his house.
What is copper?
Copper, also known as red copper, is a metal that has had many applications for centuries, because it is malleable, durable and has a high conductivity of heat and electricity. Because of these special properties, it is widely used in industry. This also applies to copper alloys, particularly bronze (copper and tin) and brass (copper and zinc).
Moreover, copper has a beautiful sheen and warm colour. That is why it was used in the past for mirrors and throughout the centuries for art objects, jewellery and in interior design and architecture.
Other applications include coins, copper wire and musical instruments.
Copper also occurs naturally in the human body. It ensures a good resistance, because it is involved in various processes in the body. Among other things, it helps in the formation of connective and bone tissue and contributes to the absorption of iron by the body. An iron deficiency (anaemia) can therefore be the result of a copper deficiency. Copper can be supplemented by eating legumes, seeds, nuts, tempeh and chocolate, for example.
Because of its purifying effect, water pipes are made of copper and for thousands of years copper has been used as a medicine in the treatment of wounds and diseases.
Copper ore is mined in mines, either underground or above ground. Depending on the type of ore, it is processed into copper in different ways.