The Evil Eye Bead. This thousands of years old talisman continues to fight against the evil eyes all over the world. This tradition still lives in Turkey. The glimmering evil eye beads that are hand made with ancient methods by a very few glass masters, are distributed from Anatolia to the whole world.
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RASIM ALTMISKARA / Evil Eye Bead Master - The technique we use for nazar boncugu - evil eye bead making is primitive. It's totally hand made. We use a thick and a thin iron rod. We roll the base of the nazar bead on the thick rod. This is the base. We add the white and the blue of the eyes with the thin rod. Just these two rods are our tools. There is this yellow eye on our beads. We make the oxide of this yellow from a mixture of zinc, metal and lead. I wonder if any chemist can make the same colour. It's one of our secrets.
Prof.Dr. NUSRET KAYA / Psychiatrist - We find the eye figure in the 5000 year old ancient Egyptian culture. The symbol of Goddess Osiris is an eye...The subconscious system makes contacts with the eyes. That is, the neurotic energy from subconscious, a powerful neurotic energy effects the subconscious of the other people...And since excessive neurotic is contagious energy, an irritating, disturbing energy, it can cause sickness.
OSMAN SAGLAM / Evil Eye Bead Master - When I was at the age of primary school, my brothers were practising this art. After the school, I used to help them. Feeding the fire, bringing them whatever they need... I worked as an apprentice for 2 or 3 years. Then I started to make my own nazar beads. And I still continue...60 years ago there were 7 or 8 furnaces. Now there are only three. Young generations do not want to learn it...I do not know what will happen after we pass away. Nobody is learning this art. I'll have to give up very soon. I'm getting older. Both of my eyes had surgical operation. I have to give up. How long can I continue? Six months, a year, and then it will be over for me
HAGOP CAN HULYAR / Goldsmith - All I do is based on the evil eye beads. All my jewellery has nazar boncugu. I use different sizes of beads. I believe that evil eye beads are protective items and that's why I began to use them in my jewels. When the bead cracks, they say that "It cracked because it took over the evil that would harm you." It's what we believe.
MURAT KAYAN / Evil Eye Bead Master - It is also believed that the people with coloured eyes have the power of so called evil look. Some time ago a young lady with blue eyes came and wanted to buy a certain bead hanging over there. Even before I could touch the bead, it was broken into pieces. It even cut my hand. I couldn't forget it. Later the lady made a joke, saying "I guess I'd better leave before I cause more damage to you and your nazar beads.
The blue evil eye bead amulets are in a creative collaboration with the other decorative arts in Istanbul. To decorate something, the first item you think of is the eye beads - nazar boncugu or their figure. Either the nazar beads decorate an object or they are decorated by some other objects. They can be assembled with a variety of designs and objects creating exciting combinations.
The gift sector is a live and dynamic sector creating innumerable variety processing the evil eye beads. Behind this sector we see some other actors
providing raw material: The glass makers. They shape glass. They are not masters of bead. They are masters of glass. But when they apply the eye figure to the glass, they end up with interesting results.
The craftsmen working in these workshops use steel rods called fonga, similar to those of the evil eye bead masters. The melted glass is rolled around these rods and very rapidly placed on top of the previous layer of coloured glass.The major issue in producing these glass amulets is to melt the different layers of coloured glass on top of each other in a high temperature. When the temperature gets lower, cracks and distortions appear on the glass.
The people that deal with and have devoted themselves to the evil eye beads, strive to explain and convey this tradition and symbol to the other people. While exporting the glass evil eye beads and eye figured gift objects to 60 countries all over the world, they want to share the positive power of the blue eye beads with all mankind... With an understanding beyond any religious belief...