Thursday, May 30, 2019

2018 Oaxaca, Mexico, with Michael deMeng, Day Three

Dream Monsters and Alebrijes: deMeng de Los Muertos

October 23rd to November 5th, 2018

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Today is still a free early day in this experience so I decided after an early 7:00 a.m. breakfast I would do another solo walkabout--mostly because I cannot imagine anyone else wanting to do what I do.

I like to think of Oaxaca as a big canvas and it is my job to find the art. It is never hard--all I have to do is get out of the hotel, pick a direction and point the camera.

After leaving our hotel I head over to the Pan American Highway and begin the climb uphill.

Uphill from our hotels a few miles up the Pacific Highway is the Auditorio Guelaguetza (The Diaper--its local nickname) which hangs over the city and serves as a concert stadium, especially for the big dance festival.

The view from The Diaper

The Mexican hero-Benito Juarez

To get from The Diaper back towards our hotel, pedestrians need to cross under the Pan American Highway. The cool thing about the walk under the highway is that it is decorated with wall art. The sad thing is that every year I come back, the art falls more and more into disrepair. 

To drop from the heights of the highway, pedestrians have to walk down a staircase that is like The Plunge of Death. I found these cool plantings on the side of the staircase. 

Because I have all day to blow off, I took Cresco Street to the right into a neighborhood which lies below The Diaper. The neighborhood is filled with art and various forms of it.

I stopped at the Two Marquesa Church.

One of the reasons I went this direction is the map I had indicated there was a cemetery this way that I had never been to.

After awhile I walked into the Panteon Del ExMarquesado.

Every once in a while even I am a bit taken aback by what I find to photograph. I consider this find a home run.

I took Madera Street back to the Centro Historico District.

As I was walking down Madera I came to this fence and looked at this:

Now, how to get in there? As it turns out, entrance is through an abandoned railway station that the city has turned into a children's book center called Museo Infantil de Oaxaca. Honestly, I blew right through the exhibitions to get behind the building where the railroad cars are.

Folks in the neighborhood are also using the station as a thoroughfare to get to their neighborhood behind the tracks. While my focus was on the railway cars, I could not help but notice that the neighborhood also has some art of interest. 

One will never know where you might stumble on an ofrenda in Oaxaca. 

The yard still has the old water tower for the locomotives--rolling stock that probably got de-commissioned in the 1950s. 

But oh--the art. 

Remember this guy--this is what he looks like once inside

For the second time today I felt like I had come upon a subject that would be a home run. 

This is the winner!

Back out on Madera I kept walking towards the zocalo. At some point I stumbled into a carpentry shop that had very fancy wood trim for sale. I bought a few pieces to take home.

By the time I was in the Centro Historico I stopped for a soup lunch at El Jardin.  This restaurant is our go to place in the zocalo in case you are looking for anyone in the group. Today, no one is around so I enjoy my food alone. At this point I had left the hotel about 8:30 a.m. and it is 1:30 p.m.  I would guess I had walked somewhere between 5 to 10 miles.

Still having some gas in the tank, I walked to the Museo Textil de Oaxaca (Textile Museum). Because of the indigenous population's traditions in this valley, textiles are a big deal.

Another ofrenda is already in place for Dia

After returning to our hotel, I helped Michael deMeng (our workshop teacher), Colleen and Janet (our workshop leader and her second in command) set up the workshop space.

After a shower, it was out to the Mayordomo for dinner with our ever-expanding group of workshop attendees who are slowly drifting into town.

After some ice cream and a walk home of the Alcala, it was time for bed as the workshop actually starts tomorrow.

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