Ceramic Trees of Life: Popular Art from Mexico
Tucked among their branches, the elaborate and colourful Mexican clay constructions known as Trees of Life may contain a range of possible scenes: pre-Hispanic cosmologies, genealogies, and rituals; biblical stories; historical vignettes; or secular events. Often fitted with candles or incense burners, they may soar to a height of twenty feet or be small enough to fit in a child's hand. Ever increasing in popularity, by the early 1970s, the remarkable and versatile Tree of Life had become a quintessential symbol of Mexico. In "Ceramic Trees of Life", Lenore Hoag Mulryan and her co-authors explore the origins of this unique Mexican art form and examine its development and contemporary manifestations. Following Mulryan's introduction, Delia Cosentino examines pre-Hispanic tree symbolism and discusses the syncretic approach of the Spanish clergy, which actively sought to emphasize parallels between local beliefs and Catholicism.Essays consider the work of prominent potting families from the three major Tree of Life producing communities: the Flores and Castillo families of Izucar de Matamoros, Heron Martinez of Acatlan de Osorio, and the potters of Metepec, focusing on the Soteno family. Lavishly illustrated with magnificent examples of Trees of Life drawn from the Gerald Daniel Collection of Mexican Folk Art at the UCLA Fowler Museum of Cultural History, as well as with many stunning field shots, this volume traces the Tree of Life from its origins to its role as a vibrant symbol of the modern nation. In so doing, it also touches upon the fate of the clay artist in present-day Mexico and the impact of commodification on the popular arts, revealing the simultaneous pull of tradition and push of modernity that have developed this popular art form in the face of the changing social, economic, and political landscape of mid- to late-twentieth-century Mexico.
Specifications of Ceramic Trees of Life: Popular Art from Mexico
|Author||Lenore Hoag Mulryan|
|Publisher||UCLA Fowler Museum|
|Number Of Pages||167|
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