Artisans and Architecture
Alright, we need to say right from the start that we LOVE Mexico !!!
One of the fun things about having a business is sourcing product. And we just spent 3 wonderful weeks where we overwhelmed with the colour, workmanship, textiles and architecture of this extraordinary country.
Mexico has a rich cultural heritage, drawing from a number of Pre-Columbian (think Incan, Mayan and Olmec just to name a few) civilisations as well as the artistry and crafts that the Spanish brought with them. This mix of old and new world skills have been the influence for artists such as Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera as well as numerous Architects, Writers and artisans, many of whom still use traditional techniques to produce their wares.
Whilst we can’t bring back everything we saw, we do want to share some of the more interesting or fun items we came across (like this photo we took to remind us how happy the Mayans were 🙂
Oilcloth was everywhere in Mexico. Even in the Museum of Anthropology in Mexico City .
Another great Mexican tradition is Día de Muertos or Day of the Dead. We took this photo at Frida Kahlo’s House of her and Diego Rivera (it looks like they have lost weight)
I have mentioned Huichol artwork in a previous blog, but we are still in awe of this workmanship that is achieved by placing coloured thread and applying it with beeswax and resin.
This photo was taken in the World Heritage listed town of San Miguel de Allende. This was actually somebody’s balcony, but it demonstrates both the use of colour (all the buildings were painted) and the wonderful appreciation of art that can be seen here.
Another great example of the colours of Mexico, these bolts of fabric are all hand loomed ! (watch this space 🙂
We also visited Puebla, home to Talavera – a style of pottery that still uses 16th Century production techniques. We visited 3 different factory’s (each of whom has their own distinct style) who explained that each piece took 3 months to produce. All the work is done by hand and requires incredible concentration. Even the brush’s are made by hand. This guy is using a paint brush made with donkey hair which has been sourced from another workers farm.
This skill with Talavaera dominates the buildings in Puebla which are all adorned in tiles. Many of them having been specially commissioned
I have to finish with Oilcloth, which as I explained is everywhere. This photo was not staged, but was taken on the beach at Tulum, complete with Hammock.
While this photo was taken at the craft market at Tonala.