The 86-year-old artisan lives in the ancient Iranian city of Hamedan. He started to work as a tinsmith at the age of seven at his father’s workshop.
“I learned the art of tin making from my father during the Second World War, and for 32 years I was interested in learning this art under the banner of my father. After his demise, I continued this art up to present and have kept it alive,” Zarrabian said in a recent interview with Iran-based Miras Aria News Agency.
“I have received many commendations from the authorities and I have actively participated in several handicraft fairs.”
Zarrabian has made many different tools at the times, including the bath horn which he says, “It is made from Aleppo and was originally a news medium that at three o'clock in the morning after cleaning the bath, the person in charge of the bath announced the preparation of the bath with this device.”
“Scoopula was another tool that we made in those years. It is widely used in nut shops. We also made oil lamps, which were very practical in the past.”
Zarrabian has also published a book on the art of tin making in ancient Hamedan.
Tinsmiths work differently from blacksmiths in that they do the majority of their work on cold metal (although they might use a hearth to heat and help shape their raw materials). Tinsmiths make items such as water pitchers, forks, spoons, and candle holders.