Tag Archives: The Arts

Ark Christening

Screen Shot 2015-11-05 at 5.51.44 PMBy Deborah Van Hoewyk

On Saturday, March 17, about 25 friends, family, and staff gathered in Tangolunda to christen “Noah’s Ark,” the new centerpiece of the Bacaanda Foundation’s arts and crafts programming. The ark will serve as a museum display in the Bacaanda gift shop, showcasing animals made from locally sourced natural materials. Continue reading Ark Christening


Fábrica Mexicana

Screen Shot 2015-11-04 at 4.51.17 PMBy Jan and Marcia Chaiken

Fábrica Mexicana, an exhibition presented in the Modern Art Museum (MAM) in Mexico City, made clear that Mexico must be placed high on the list of countries creating the most imaginative and environmentally friendly industrial designs. Featuring displays of industrial design and modern architecture in Mexico, the exhibition focused on the influence of Mexican art on shaping commercial products, buildings and whole neighborhoods. Continue reading Fábrica Mexicana

Oaxacan Art

Screen Shot 2015-11-04 at 4.41.33 PMWhen most visitors to Oaxaca think of Oaxacan art, the first thing that usually comes to mind is folk art; alebrijes (carved, fancifully painted wooden figures), barro negro (black pottery), tapetes (hand-made wool rugs), and other craft products. They don’t realize that Oaxaca has a longstanding fine art tradition which continues to thrive today. Indeed Oaxaca has produced world renowned artists such as the late masters Rufino Tamayo, Rodolfo Morales, and contemporary artists Francisco Toledo and Demián Flores. Continue reading Oaxacan Art

The Blues: Indigo

Screen Shot 2015-11-01 at 6.40.58 PMBy Julie Etra

Añil, scientific name generally referring to Indigofera tinctoria, belongs to the pea family and is the source of the beautiful color indigo. In Nahuatl it is called jiquitle. The plant is a shrub, growing up to 1.5 m in height also used for a blue dye is its close relative Indigofera suffruticosa, which is the species used in Mesoamerica (Mexico and Central America). Like other plants in the pea family, these plants ‘fix’ nitrogen through the interaction of bacteria living in the nodules of the plants’ roots, thereby and enriching the soil without the need for supplemental nitrogen. They are also excellent plants for erosion control. Continue reading The Blues: Indigo

The Color Purple

Screen Shot 2015-11-01 at 6.37.51 PMBy Brooke Gazer

Since Ancient times, in both Europe and Mesoamerica, purple has been associated with royalty and special religious ceremonies. As this exquisitely rich color was both rare and time consuming to achieve, collectors of purple dye were highly respected. Today only twenty five men remain on earth who are continuing the ancient tradition of collecting purple dye. This craft has been passed down to them by their ancestors over several centuries. These dyers travel from the remote village of Pinotepa de Don Luis to work the rocky Oaxacan shoreline north of Huatulco Continue reading The Color Purple


Screen Shot 2015-11-01 at 6.16.44 PMBy Neal Erickson

Music has, for centuries, been an integral part of the life and culture of the indigenous people of Mexico. Before the arrival of the first Spanish Conquistadors they used conch shell horns, reed and wooden flutes and various drums and other percussive instruments to make music to enhance their ceremonial life. When the priests of the Spanish Conquest began introducing their brand of Christianity to the Mexican people, they brought instruments whose intended use was to be strictly for religious ceremonies but to the dismay and objection of the clergy, the indigenous people began to use them for secular songwriting and performance as well. Continue reading Mariachi