Wednesday, August 2, 2023

2023 07 Vida y Sueños (Life and Dreams): A Mixed Media Art Experience with Michael deMeng and Andrea Matus During Oaxaca’s Famous Guelaguetza Festival Dia Cinco

Dia Cinco, July 16th (Sunday)

After the hotel breakfast we started a bonus class session this morning at 9:00 a.m. which lasted until 11:30 a.m.

We all met in the lobby at Noon to head out for a walking tour of Oaxaca. 

Our first official stop was the San Pablo Cultural center which includes art galleries and a textile museum. We saw an excellent exhibition by a mixed media artist named Demian Flores called Dioses Ocultos. 

We then walked to the Museo Textile de Oaxaca. We saw an exhibition of the huipil which is the garment we are using as inspiration for our own pieces.  

The walk over to lunch was full of great street art. 

These are fireworks waiting for la calenda

Lunch was at Terazza Istmo which has great food and an even greater view.

Lunch group shots by Denice

After lunch it was a short walk to the Basilica de Soledad campus.

Photo by Denice

Our real mission was to eat the best nieves (think sorbets) in town.

Unable to resist the Mexican machismo of being hooked up to a car battery, Michael deMeng took the challenge. 

I felt it was better to let sleeping dogs lie.

Our afternoon activity was a lecture at the printmaking collective Subterraneos. If you looked at all my street art images in these blogs you will have seen a great deal of their work, often labeled, from the walls around Oaxaca.


What we got was a fascinating account of how you can be a revolutionary teacher and printmaker in a country where the federal government cannot shut you down because the most powerful union in the region, the teachers, love you and they also think your publicly hung prints make Oaxaca look more arty. The lecture was provided by Marco, a man who since he was changed by a teacher strike in 1996 has been making political and social art in various forms and hanging it about town, featuring indigenous faces, so that the common people of Oaxaca can see themselves. He is a political leader and an educator all rolled into one.

Everyone was quite busy while we were there as they were preparing the wheat paste prints for a midnight run around town tonight to hang the art. Below you can see it drying on the dry rack.

In the next few days it will be interesting to see if we can spot any of the new work on the walls of Oaxaca. 

Denice and I walked back with Anna and took in the preparations on the street for this evening’s big performance in the Auditorio. 

By accident we walked right up to the Photographic Center Manuel Alvaro Bravo (Centro Fotografico Manuel Alvarez Bravo). Of course, we had to go in. The first exhibition was by Nicola Lorusso called Ciclo-Rama. 

The other artist was Cecilia Hurtado's Los Archivos del Olvido.

A few more pieces of art showed up on the remainder of the walk.

Denice and I had dinner at El Jarden below the clubhouse. Then we went back to the workshop and worked on our pieces until 10:00 p.m.

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