Mexico

Rafael Cilau Valadez

if you’re lucky, you’ve seen the psychedelically colorful, energetically configured yarn paintings traditional to parts of Mexico in person: if so, you know the name “yarn painting” is a misnomer, because there’s no paint involved. Instead, master artists like Rafael Cilau Valadez craft intricate compositions in rainbow hues out of yarn, meticulously arranging animal, plant,…
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Isaias Federico Barragan Baustista, Federico Jimenez

The art of making filigree jewelry was brought to Mexico in the 16th century from Spain. Oaxaca is known for its fine filigree pieces. The earrings, necklaces, pendants, rings and bracelets are traditionally worn during Oaxacan festivals and weddings, but many people have begun to wear them daily. Both Isaias Federico Barragan Baustista and Federico…
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Porfirio Gutierrez & Juana Gutierrez Contreras

Master weaver Porfirio Gutierrez doesn’t just make art, he also works to preserve the ancient traditions of his Zapotec background. According to a recent profile of Gutierrez in The New York Times, “Mr Gutierrez is descended from a long line of weavers. His father taught him to weave as a child; he even wove the…
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Edith Albarran Duque & Cesar Montes Rosales

Traditional Purhepecha jewelry, indigenous to the Purhepecha ethnic group, comes from the Michoacan state of Mexico, and for generations has been treasured for its delicate beauty and distinctive designs. Purhepecha women and girls almost always have at least one pair of silver or gold traditional filigree earrings, proudly worn for social occasions. Traditionally, when a…
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Pedro Meza

Textile artist Pedro Meza creates a range of items according to ancient Mayan techniques and design influences which span thousands of years. Residing in the Highlands of Chiapas, Mexico, Meza founded the artist collective Sna Jolobil 1978 to advance and promote traditional means of creating regionally and culturally specific textiles. Sna Jolobil’s members, for the…
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Juan Isaac Vásquez García, Jerónimo Vásquez Gutiérrez and Wilmer Vásquez Luis

The community of Teotitlán del Valle in Zapotec, Mexico, has long been recognized as a center for gorgeous textiles. In the last several decades, the intricate weavings of the Vásquez family have gained international attention. Motifs are mostly based on traditional Zapotec design elements from pre-Hispanic buildings, ruins, and other ancient sites. With the arrival…
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Isabelle Collins

Mexican ceramicist Dr. Isabelle Collins once said, “I love art, but I cannot eat out of my painting. [With pottery] you can showcase it, but you can also use it.” This encapsulates Collins’ drive to make artwork that is as beautiful as it is utilitarian. Talavera-style pottery is most commonly associated with Mexico, and for…
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Laura Patishtan Jimenez

In the mountains of rural Chiapas, 120 Mayan women from five local municipalities weave a world of enchantment. Home to twelve indigenous groups, the Chiapas region of Mexico is renowned for its dynamic and vibrant textile tradition. Here, each village is distinguished by its own woven colors and patterns that together form the region’s panoply…
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Jose German Punzo Nuñez, Ignacio Punzo Angel, Jose Rosaldo Punzo Nuñez, Ignacio Gabriel Punzo Nuñez

The large Nuñez family lives in a small town about an hour and a half from Morelia, the capital of Michoacan, Mexico. Copper and silver work is the main source of livelihood for many of the community’s artisans, and the Nuñez family are masters of this traditional and remarkably distinct type of work. Inspired by…
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Innovando la Tradicion

Innovating Tradition is a multidisciplinary and multicultural network of creators and a non-profit association. Since 2008, they offer a variety of services to the potters of Oaxaca, with the goal of raising the symbolic, cultural and economic value of clay and build sustainable communities.

José García Antonio and family

José García Antonio uses clay from the soil of his village to create life-sized sculptures of Zapotec women, mermaids, and other smaller figures. Known for his large creations, he has won many awards and has been featured in books about master folk artists of Mexico. After experiencing problems with his sight for 50 years, he…
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Agustín Cruz Tinoco

The hand carved wooden figures that have brought Agustín national recognition come from pine, cedar, or mahogany wood. Agustín has been carving since childhood and has received awards in various state and national folk art competitions for his carved wooden pieces. He seeks to understand and exploit the natural forms and qualities of the wood….
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Magdalena Pedro Martínez

Working with the distinctive black clay indigenous to San Bartolo Coyotepec, in the Mexican state of Oaxaca, Magdalena Pedro Martínez sculpts figures of women dressed in regional costumes. The black clay comes from the mines outside of her town, located in the central valley just south of Oaxaca City. The ceramic artists of San Bartolo…
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