Artesania in San Miguel de Allende

Artesania: Behind the Scenes in San Miguel de Allende and Guanajuato

Admit it. Next to simmering on the beach or sunning poolside slathered in oil, you visit Mexico to shop. In fact, if you’re a real shopper you bypass beach resorts altogether. On at least one trip each year, you head into the interior, into cities such as Guadalajara, Guanajuato, Morelia, San Miguel de Allende, and […]

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Bronze dog effigies

A Chapala treasure: ceramic artisan Javier Degollado, creator of pre-Columbian reproductions

Feria Maestros del Arte has been called a “heart” show and not just another “art” show because the artists pay nothing to attend — no booth fee, no percentage of sales. We find local families willing to house them for the three days they are here and we feed them while they are at the show. […]

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Amate painted by Gerardo Mendoza

Did You Know? Most “bark paper” comes from wild fig trees

Besides being used as a kind of rough paper for records and correspondence, amate was also cut into human or animal forms as part of witchcraft rituals after which it would be buried in front of the person’s house or animal enclosure. Colorful paintings on papel amate or bark paper are sold throughout central Mexico, virtually anywhere […]

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Mariachis perform at a gala held at the Hacienda of Nogueras, Comala, Colima.

Alejandro Rangel Hidalgo – Universal artist from Colima

In the half-light I enter the ‘horno’ or oven room. A base of reds frames the pre-Hispanic pieces in the Museum of Alejandro Rangel Hidalgo. It is easy to imagine the fiery origin of the land and the fire that formed the ancient ceramics. Outside, the Volcano of Fire smokes above the countryside. And so I meet […]

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A close-up...

Tijuana: Serious shopping for the serious shopper

Tijuana: A Taste of Mexico Part III: Recently we have heard and read much of “outsourcing” in economic terms. And it’s true that by the large-scale outsourcing of services and manufacturing, we are incrementally destroying our own economy. But the key is the term “large-scale,” since only the larger losses truly affect a local economy. […]

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Piñata Images Copyright © 1999 María Elena. All Rights Reserved Worldwide

Piñatas boast deep historical roots

Breaking piñatas is not only a familiar element of many Mexican festivities, but a popular custom with deep historical roots. Some scholars link the practice with religious rituals of ancient Mesoamerica, while others trace it back to a Chinese custom associated with the start of the spring and the yearly agricultural cycle that was introduced to Europeans […]

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This ceramics shop in 3 de Mayo offers Mexican ceramics, porcelain and resin handcrafted figures. Clusters of tiny wicker baskets hang in the open doorway. © Julia Taylor, 2008

Handmade Mexican Art from 3 de Mayo, Morelos and getting it home in one piece

If you are planning a trip to the state of Morelos in central Mexico you’ll probably want to enjoy a fun day of shopping in the small colonia of 3 de Mayo. (Yes, they spell it with a real number “Three.”) Spending some of your time and money on any of the distinctive products for […]

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