The Silversmiths of Zagora: Golden hands. Silver dreams

The Silversmiths of Zagora: Golden hands. Silver dreams

Alluring broaches, necklaces, rings, and silver studded bracelets, many of which are embedded with shining colourful gemstones, these splendid adornments are the hallmark of the celebrated Amazigh silversmiths of Zagora. Zagora is known as a bastion of this age-old art form. For the men who cast and forge the metal in sweltering foundries, turning the molten orange liquid into shining ornaments that they imagine could be proudly worn by royalty, the art of jewelry making has been in their blood for centuries . We have been silversmithing for many years, the jews used to practice this craft in the region
before our ancestors learned it from them and have been silversmithing ever since they left the area, we carried it on with our parents with the goal of becoming master silversmiths and passing the knowledge on from one generation to the next. Inherited from previous generations, The traditional techniques are repeated with great care and reverence . We begin the forging process by first moistening “Tallight” which is the type of sand that we use to make the templates, then we draw different forms of Zouaq on them such as brooches, bracelets, rings …etc The calibre of the majestic accessories is of the highest esteem. Yet the artisans whose intricate skill in crafting them struggle to achieve a sustainable livelihood from their labour. To address these challenges they have formed a co-operative to preserve their proud tradition and illustrious craft. We care about promoting our products that we hope will be in greater demand, that’s why we founded the co-op so our products will be marketable, which is the principal reason for starting this family run co-operative, because the majority of our family are artisans. it is their hope that with a unified approach to protecting and promoting this once celebrated art form, that together their fine wares will continue to adorn the fingers, wrists, and necks of those who dream of emulating majesty, and the torch of their trade will be passed from one generation to the next.

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