Innovando|Communities

Alberta Mateo

Alberta, Dorotea, Macrina, Elia and Angelina are the zapotec women at Mateo's family who produce polished red clay, backed by a generation-long tradition.

They begin by bringing clay, sometimes by foot, from the countryside. They use a special techinque to form their pieces, starting from a clay cone that is rotated by hand and pulled up with a corn hub. Once finnished, the pieces are left to dry and polisehd meticulously with a special stone. The process ends with an open-air firing.

The Mateo family is renowned for their good sense of humor, but also for the quality of their polishing, the elegant shapes they produce and their interest in new and surprising designs. The Mateo Family is the creator of the adorable pigs for 1050º.
Venden sus productos en la central de abastos de Oaxaca, en el mercado de Tlacolula y surten a diversos restaurantes y hoteles, como Casa Oaxaca.

Macrina Mateo

Alberta, Dorotea, Macrina, Elia and Angelina are the zapotec women at Mateo's family who produce polished red clay, backed by a generation-long tradition.

They begin by bringing clay, sometimes by foot, from the countryside. They use a special techinque to form their pieces, starting from a clay cone that is rotated by hand and pulled up with a corn hub. Once finnished, the pieces are left to dry and polisehd meticulously with a special stone. The process ends with an open-air firing.

The Mateo family is renowned for their good sense of humor, but also for the quality of their polishing, the elegant shapes they produce and their interest in new and surprising designs. The Mateo Family is the creator of the adorable pigs for 1050º.
Venden sus productos en la central de abastos de Oaxaca, en el mercado de Tlacolula y surten a diversos restaurantes y hoteles, como Casa Oaxaca.

Serena Simón (1967)

She comes from a family of potters, and learned the craft as a child from her mother. Most of her pieces are hand-formed, though she may use casting mold if needed.

Serena's traditional work stands out for the delicate and sophisticated decoration, made with the simplest tools, in which she expreses her love for nature.

She produces some of the most succesfull pieces for 1050º, like the Doming fruit bowl.

Rufina Ruíz

Rufina inherited the love for ceramics and traditional cooking from ther mother. She instructed her sons and daughters in the ceramic craft. She believed that both men and women should be independent and self-sustaining, so also taught them the house's “hard work” like cooking and cleaning.

Rufina coursed accounting studies but decided to commit full time to clay. She and her three sisters form a solid group of artisans, where each one develops her habilities. They usually make traditional Atzompa pottery: glazed products like pots, apaxtles, chia-pets for Holy Week. Rufina participates in 1050º with glazed chilmoleras (mortars) and chia-seed hanging pots.

Tradition in Atzompa has been seriously threatened in the last two decades by the leaded-glaze prohibition, the spread of the city and the introduction of platic products. Looking for alternatives and new paths, the Ruiz family decided to join Innovando la tradición in the experimental research proyect for kilns using alternative energy sources.

Dorotea Mateo

Alberta, Dorotea, Macrina, Elia and Angelina are the zapotec women at Mateo's family who produce polished red clay, backed by a generation-long tradition.

They begin by bringing clay, sometimes by foot, from the countryside. They use a special techinque to form their pieces, starting from a clay cone that is rotated by hand and pulled up with a corn hub. Once finnished, the pieces are left to dry and polisehd meticulously with a special stone. The process ends with an open-air firing.

The Mateo family is renowned for their good sense of humor, but also for the quality of their polishing, the elegant shapes they produce and their interest in new and surprising designs. The Mateo Family is the creator of the adorable pigs for 1050º.
Venden sus productos en la central de abastos de Oaxaca, en el mercado de Tlacolula y surten a diversos restaurantes y hoteles, como Casa Oaxaca.

Estela Cardozo

Born in San Bartolo Coyotepec, traveled to Mexico City when young in search for work, and stayed in a factory for 40 years. She came back to her family, traditional potters, and learned the craft from her father, a pioneer in the making of prayer beads and religious images.

Most of Estela’s work comes from casting moulds. She specializes small pieces, beads and necklaces, somehow preserving his father's heritage. You may meet her going back and forth from her house to her shop, with inexhaustible energy, in her characteristic yellow cargo tricycle. She produces colorful woven necklaces for 1050º.

Ana María Alarzón

She learned to work with clay from her father, who used to make large chia-seed covered animals traditional in Easter festivities. Ana María creates small utilitarian pieces like the small mezcal cups for 1050º.

Her nine sons and daughters have also learned the craft: Some make miniature work, two specialize in filigree, and others make sculptures.

She has participated in numerous courses, for example: Introduction to non-leaded glazing for low temperature (2009), with Innovando la Tradición; and workshops with the artists Gabriel Macotela at the CaSa (2011).

Elia Mateo

Alberta, Dorotea, Macrina, Elia and Angelina are the zapotec women at Mateo's family who produce polished red clay, backed by a generation-long tradition.

They begin by bringing clay, sometimes by foot, from the countryside. They use a special techinque to form their pieces, starting from a clay cone that is rotated by hand and pulled up with a corn hub. Once finnished, the pieces are left to dry and polisehd meticulously with a special stone. The process ends with an open-air firing.

The Mateo family is renowned for their good sense of humor, but also for the quality of their polishing, the elegant shapes they produce and their interest in new and surprising designs. The Mateo Family is the creator of the adorable pigs for 1050º.
Venden sus productos en la central de abastos de Oaxaca, en el mercado de Tlacolula y surten a diversos restaurantes y hoteles, como Casa Oaxaca.

Silvia García

She learned to work with clay at the age of twenty, with her uncles. She makes pottery, looks after sons and grandsons, takes care of a small shop and her own stand at the Artisanal Plaza in San Bartolo, where she sells traditional and decorative pieces, and mezcal.

She works both with mould casting and handmade modeling. She is passing the family tradition down to to her grandaughter Fátima. Silvia is the author of the succesful Bartola water jugs, which where selected by MoMA store to be exhibited during Destination: Mexico.

Juan Ruiz Zárate

Juan comes from a family of artisans. Studied for three years under the guidance of talented Japanese teachers on a training program from JICA (Japanese International Cooperation Agency). He is currently a teacher at ICAPET (Institute of Training for Technical Employment from Oaxaca State), training people interested in the methods for creating high and low-temperature ceramics, glazed or non-glazed.

As a glaze specialist, he is in charge of achieving the amazing turquoise color of the small mezcal cups. He is also an adivsor for glazing and firing for Innovando la Tradicion.