Sunday, February 13, 2011

In Celebration of the Olmecs

I've written about the Hernandez Cano workshop several times before. They have been a favorite of ours for a long time, and it's great that these artisans are finally being recognized by others for their unique, beautiful burnished pottery featuring Pre-Columbian designs. Numerous of their pieces are now on display in the museum store of the de Young Museum in San Francisco-- to coincide with the upcoming Olmec exhibit.
The Olmecs are most known for the their colossal stone heads and were considered to be the mother culture of Mesoamerica. This artisan workshop, located in Zinapecuaro, Michoacán, specializes in replicating an ancient pottery technique and Pre- Columbian designs. The photo above was taken at the workshop when we picked up the museum's order. Several pieces shown here are part of the stunning collection currently on sale at the de Young. The guys did their best work for this San Francisco show, and we are so pleased to be able to share it with folks in the Bay Area who appreciate fine Mexican crafts.
I love the creativity of this family, and how they all work together, with the younger generation now taking more of a role in both creating new designs and managing the business. I'll never forget my surprise when my first big order in 2005 was written down with pencil on notebook paper. They still use spiral notebooks, but now I am able to place orders via email with Salvador Hernandez Cano's son, German. I am happy to see this technology come to rural Mexico, and thankful that their friendly, honest way of doing business has not changed one bit.

Salvador Hernandez Cano of Zinapecuaro.

If you're interested in seeing more of the burnished pottery from the Hernandez Cano family workshop, please contact Mexico By Hand at: or call (510)526-6395

And check out our other blog posts on ceramics with Pre-Columbian designs.