Combustión / Cumbustion

Mexican painter Gabriela Epstein: color, form and energy

What started as a hobby for painter Gabriela Epstein has grown into an essential part of her existence. “It’s everything to me,” she says, describing art as her profession and source of income, but also as something instinctual that serves as a form of therapy and channel of expression for her. Epstein started down the […]

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Serpents writhe on a fierce horned mask by Tonala artisan Prudencio Guzman. He names this design "The Death of Ambition." Costumed Tastoanes in frightening masks battle Saint James in a ritual dance each year on July 25th. © Kinich Ramirez, 2006

Wandering warriors: the Tastoan masks of Prudencio Guzman

As a boy, Prudencio Guzmán Rodríguez was haunted by the mysterious characters known as Tastoanes, who are part of a tradition that spans more than a century in the municipality of Tonalá, Mexico, where he grew up. The Tastoanes would come to Guzmán in a recurring dream, in which he was walking down the street […]

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Jorge Wilmot ceramic

Mexican master ceramist Jorge Wilmot: the interval between before and after

“I am from Mexico, but it is like (being) from another country that no longer exists,” says famed potter Juan Jorge Wilmot Mason. Born in Monterrey 77 years ago, Wilmot eventually made his way to his long-time residence of Tonalá in the late 1950s. He says that Tonalá had far fewer inhabitants back then and […]

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Francisco Arturo Marin - 1937

Modern Mexican Sculpture (A Blending of Old World and New World Sensibility)

Between 1920 and 1940 Mexico went through a period of radical transformation. The revolution had ended and in its wake an energy for transformation was unleashed that was unparalleled anywhere. For the artistic and intellectual community those years were full of excitement and creativity as new identities, personal as well as cultural, were being forged. […]

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Raul Ybarra: Embryography of a Mexican jeweler

Embryography of a jeweler Raúl Ybarra

It is perhaps only in the “advanced” civilizations that artists are elevated above craftsmen, with the former thought to be leading the cultural vanguard while the latter are only practicing traditional folk crafts. This attitude often separates the artistic talent from the technical prowess of art. There is nothing wrong with a painter who relies […]

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Raymundo Becerril. Untitled

Creating is being: Mexican artist Raymundo Becerril Porras

“The faculty of being is born in the habit of creating,” says multi-talented artist Raymundo Becerril Porras, whose very life seems to personify this idea. Creation, after all, is an integral part of who he is, with his career encompassing that of painter, dancer and writer. As Becerril notes, “for me, art is my life.” […]

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Casa del Arte Popular Mexicano, Cancun

Cancun’s cultural oasis: La Casa del Arte Popular Mexicano

Tucked away between the towering hotels of Cancun’s sparkling shores is a cultural treasure known as La Casa del Arte Popular Mexicano. Perched atop the pier on Kukulcán Boulevard in Cancun’s hotel zone, the tiny museum is brimming with handcrafted pieces that reflect Mexico’s rich artistic legacy. Careful thought went into the creation of La […]

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Miguel Angel Martínez. Untitled.

Living memories: photographs by Mexico’s Miguel Angel Martinez

When Miguel Angel Martínez attended a photography class nearly a decade ago at the Universidad de Guadalajara (Guadalajara University), he suddenly knew that he had found his calling. A student in the university’s Escuela de Artes Plásticas (School of Plastic Arts), Martínez had been immersed in a world of painting and drawing. But when he […]

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