THE LAST SURVIVING COPPER TOOLING ARTIST IN PENINSULA MALAYSIA

Monday, August 12, 2013 at 7:52 PM




This form of art is not commonly found as only a handful of people are still keeping this dying art alive today. Among them is Haji Osman Arshad and his son Haji Hisham Osman


Copper tooling is an art sculpturing technique using copper foil and embossed with designs on it. This form of art is not commonly found as only a handful of people are still keeping this dying art alive today. Among them is Haji Osman Arshad and his son Haji Hisham Osman. A retired teacher, Haji Osman learned the art in the 70's through his friend and over the years, he perfected the technique via various form of tools. He later passed on the knowledge to his son Hisham, who further improved it with better tools and preservating procedures.
 
Unlike water colour and oil painting, copper tooling is truly a labour intensive hobby done truly out of love for art. The beauty of coppper tooling is that it is hand-made and no two pieces can be the same. One can imagine any designs possible and create a copper piece. The intended design on the copper has to be precise as one mistake cannot be corrected as once an identation is applied onto the copper foil, it starts to take shape. Meticulous planning is required when starting a project. For beginners, one usually have their designs drawn onto a tracing paper before tracing the design onto the copper foil but for practitioners like Haji Osman and Hisham the designs are derived from images in the head and quickly sculpture the design into reality.
 
Copper tooling requires specific tools to create and the end product needs to be polished and coated for a long lasting view. Oxydisation is the main culprit to copper as without coating the copper foil itself will slowly turn dark brown until a greenish patina will appear. Polishing will undo the oxide on the surface but without a proper coating, it will turn brown again after a few weeks. Coating usually consists of a translucent resin based varnish to prevent oxygen from coming into contact with the surface, thus preserving the art piece for decades. It requires patience and careful planning when embarking to do a copper tooling piece.
 



Interested parties can contact Hisham Osman at 0172292951 or at his email - shamosman01@yahoo.com for any request for copper tooling work. Islamic verses can also be ordered depending on length. Attached are some copper creations up for sale for your perusal:
 

Copper tooling description - 9 Koi Fish
Measurement- 26inches (H) x 37inches (W)inclusive frame
Time taken to create - 2 months
Created by Haji Hisham Osman


Copper tooling description - Peacock in a Vineyard
Measurement - 36inches (H) x 26inches (W)inclusive frame
Time taken to create - 2 months
Created by Haji Hisham Osman


Copper tooling description - Wau Bulan
Measurement -36inches (H) x 28inches (W) inclusive frame
Time taken to create - 2 months
Created by Haji Hisham Osman


Copper tooling description - Two Traditional Wayang Kulit dancers
Measurement - 30inches (H) x 17inches (W) inclusive frame
Time taken to create - 1 month
Created by Haji Osman Arshad


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