I first wrote about this event six months ago and although this bi-annual event has only been held four times so far, it is already the most important showcase of Mexican indigenous small businesses, including those making handcrafts. The Expo de los Pueblos Indígenas is held roughly every six months, but does not quite yet … Continue reading The Good Weekend, Part 3 – Over 400 indigenous producers in Mexico City
After freezing in Amealco, last Sunday was spent in a warmer climate, in Cuernavaca. Many foreigners have heard of Cuernavaca, "the land of eternal spring," principally because there are a number of schools that host students looking to learn Spanish. But the state it is in, Morelos, is almost completely unknown. Despite bordering Mexico City … Continue reading The Good Weekend, Part 2 – Handcrafts of Morelos
Since 2011, Mexico has had a national sales event called "El Buen Fin" (The Good Weekend) in November. Based off of the U.S.'s "Black Friday," it is promoted by various business organizations and the federal government and features sales and special credit deals. This year it fell on Constitution Day weekend, with Monday the 21st … Continue reading The Good Weekend, Part 1 Handcrafted Dolls
One day I was browsing in the La Lagunilla antique market in Mexico City, when some small, hand-painted images depicting the burning Twin Towers jumped out at me. These were not works of art in the traditional sense. The painting styles were crude at best, none done by professionals, but that is part of the … Continue reading Little paintings as prayer
Many foreigners think Mexico is nothing more than beaches and deserts, perhaps a little jungle thrown in. However, large areas of central Mexico are in the mountains, making for more temperate, even colder climates, and forests of pine and oaks that rival anything its northern neighbor has. Tlalpujahua is on the far eastern edge … Continue reading Michoacan’s Christmas town
Tenango Otomi embroidery is probably one of the most visible forms of Mexican embroidery, with samples available in many tourist markets, often on garments and linens. As bright and attractive as it is, what is available in the markets is not indicative of the skills many Otomi women of the state of Hidalgo have. Elvira … Continue reading Fine stitching in a very rugged environment
In a way, the story of Carmen Caballero Sevilla represents that of many of Mexican's artisans, past and present... who toil away in anonymity, often making products that are of high quality and/or unique, but never (quite) getting the recognition they deserve. For a brief shining moment, Caballero's work did get recognition, by non other … Continue reading For a brief, shining moment….
The city of Aguascalientes was founded in the latter 16th century as part of Spanish efforts to expand New Spain northward. By the 18th century, it became a noted producer of polychrome glazed pottery (majolica). This pottery was fairly common in Mexico, generally of a off-white to light yellow tin-based background glaze with decorative elements … Continue reading Reviving Aguascalientes glazed pottery