|The potter’s house|
Totonicapan, Guatemala is known as a city of skilled artisans. It was our pleasure to visit two such craftsmen, to hear them talk about their artistry and watch them each create one of their pieces.
We began by meeting Julio, a third-generation potter who worked in a small, open-air studio. He explained that he uses a lower temperature to bake his ceramics (and even hopes to patent this idea). Unlike many local artisans, he uses lead-free glazes on his products so they can safely be used to serve food.
From the pottery studio, it was a short distance to visit Miguel Hernandez, a weaver. Miguel works with two looms. The first is a traditional Mayan loom built by his grandfather, which he uses to produce traditional patterns and simple modern pieces. He built the second fifteen years ago, and that one allows him to create more intricate designs.
Miguel graciously let me try weaving. If it looks like I’m working painstakingly slowly, you are correct.
|Miguel worked a little faster than I did|
Miguel’s wife Rachel served us a wonderful lunch of chicken, potatoes, and carrot soup. Just like the farmhouse meal we ate in Xetonox, this simple fare was one of the best meals of our trip.
|Artisan at work|
|My finished design|
|Local musicians performing in the town square|