Juan Mata Ortíz is a small village of potters, farmers and cowboys in Northern Chihuahua. About 30 years ago, an unschooled artistic genius, Juan Quezada, taught himself how to make earthenware jars in a method used hundreds of years ago by the prehistoric inhabitants. Now, his works are known worldwide and over 300 men, women and children in the village of less than 2000 make decorative wares. Much of the polychrome and blackware is feather light and exquisitely painted.
Many of the potters are also cowboys and farmers. These stories serve to document the art and the people in this unassuming pueblo, which is often called “magical” by the relative handful of tourists who visit. Enjoy this other view of Mexico — Michael Williams.
“Among the Artists and the Cowboys” (Index):
- Mata Ortiz, Chihuahua; a village of potters
- Water and culture shock in Mata Ortiz, Mexico
- Mother’s Day in Mata Ortiz
- Learning the ropes in Mata Ortiz
- El Cohetero: The fireworks man of Mata Ortiz
- Evolution of a gourmet in Mata Ortiz, Mexico
- A gift for giving: The mandy Man of Mata Ortiz
- My heart won’t let me stop: A ceramic artisan of Mata Ortiz
- From father to son: On top of the world in Mata Ortiz
- Leonel Lopez: A Mata Ortiz storyteller on pottery
- A mother’s influence on a ceramic artist of Mata Ortiz
- Luz: Another village light in Mata Ortiz, Mexico
- Mata Ortiz: How do you get there from here?
- In Mata Ortiz: Once, we were so poor
- Owls, turtles, javelinas and rabbits in Mata Ortiz, Mexico
- It’s a bargain in Mexico!
- Adaptations: Survival of the cleverest
- Samuel Lopez, A Young Cowboy
- The Valley Of The Caves
- Has tourism ruined the real Mexico?
- Jaripeo: Mexico’s drive-in rodeo
- Eating the guest of honor
Published or Updated on: October 1, 1997