I found a display of nativity scenes, er, on display in the museum on the Zocalo. This is the former government palace which is still being identified that way by foreign media who don't know any better and by lefty media who seek to impress their readers with various anarchist movements. This building was abandoned by the government over a year ago and was opened as a museum last spring. It was invaded by APPO and the striking teachers and the museum's exhibits were partially destroyed.
Now that the PFP has given the museum back to the government, it is trying to recover. It was a bit breezy inside because none of the dozens of broken windows have been replaced yet, but they had done a pretty good job of cleaning it up.
There is some really nice stuff on display there. The artisans from San Martin
Tilcajete (copal wood), San Bartolo Coyotepec (barro negro - black clay), Santa Maria Atzompa (barro rojo - red clay) and a from couple of villages where they work with barro natural (a mixture of black and red clays) had brought their nativity scenes to the museum for display.
They have also brought them for sale but there were no buyers. So I took photos of most of the pieces and will present them to you on behalf of the artisans. The photos are not the best as far as photos go for a formal catalog, but because these displays could not be tampered with (moved around), I had to take the photos on an "as is where is" basis.
I also realize that it's a bit late in the game for nativity scenes, but that's the way it's been going down here.
Here we go:
This is a single piece sculpted from barro rojo, painted with glaze and then kiln-cured. The piece is roughly 13"x12"x16" high.
Its weight is about 5 lbs.
There are 12 pieces in this scene. The pieces are about 3.5" high. They are hand carved in copal wood and hand painted.
There are 12 pieces total here including the Star of Bethlehem and the comet's tail which serve as a platform for the nativity scene.I've got a lot more but I'll have to add them later. I cannot go before you see this one, however.
The pieces are about 17" high.
They are hand carved in copal wood and hand painted.
There are 23 pieces in barro rojo. Most of them are about 30" tall. The detail is astounding, down to the hair in the beards of Joseph, the shepherds and the Three Magi.
I asked the young man on the left to stand in so that you could get a better idea of the scope of this Nativity Scene. The grass on the floor and the cross in the foreground are not included.
This price includes about $500 in packaging and $2000 in freight costs from Francisco's door to yours. These costs are estimated and could be a bit higher. I shouldn't think more than a few hundred dollars, however.
Cross posted at Pale Horse Galleries
for art, gifts and collectibles -- all hand made
by Mexican indigenous artists.
TAGS: Oaxaca, Mexico, Oaxaca teachers strike, Pale Horse Galleries, gifts, collectibles, Mexican arts and crafts, Nativity Scenes