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One-Of-A-Kind Art: Hand-Hammered
March 16, 2017
The traditional technique of hand-hammering, or Palu in Balinese, produces lustrous, textured surfaces, transforming precious metal into timeless work of art. Palu designs are also a symbol of shared experiences: Every indentation represents a different milestone, memory, or experience.
Throughout history, Balinese artisans who are also couples work in compassionate balance, with the woman heating the metals, and the man lifting and setting down the hammer.
Our artisans consider the task a meditative one, akin to the mesmerizing trance associated with falling in love. It takes years to master this skill—as the artisan becomes a master in Palu, his relationship with his partner also depends. Versions of this scene are occasionally etched in the back grilles of certain special pieces.
The expressive symmetry of the finished piece is made personal by every artisan’s individual touch. Just as every relationship is unique, no hand hammered (Palu) piece is the same, the indentations forming a surface that’s as distinctive as every wearer.