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Norma writes for Selvedge Magazine Issue #109 -- Rise Up, November 2022
Norma Writes for Selvedge Latin Issue #89
What is a Study Tour: Our programs are designed as learning experiences, and as such we talk with weavers about how and why they create, what is meaningful to them in their designs, the ancient history of patterning and design, use of color, tradition and innovation, values and cultural continuity, and the social context within which they work. First and foremost, we are educators. Norma worked in top US universities for over 35 years and Eric founded the education department at Oaxaca’s textile museum. Our interest is in creating connection and artisan economic development.
Why We Left, Expat Anthology: Norma’s Personal Essay
Norma Contributes Two Chapters!
- Norma Schafer and Oaxaca Cultural Navigator LLC has offered programs in Mexico since 2006. We have over 30 years of university program development experience. See my resume.
Study Toursd are personally curated and introduce you to Mexico's greatest artisans. They are off-the-beaten path, internationally recognized. We give you access to where people live and work. Yes, it is safe and secure to travel. Groups are limited in size for the most personal experience.
Programs can be scheduled to meet your travel plans. Send us your available dates.
Designers, retailers, wholesalers, universities and other organizations come to us to develop weaving relationships, customized itineraries, study abroad programs, meetings and conferences. It's our pleasure to make arrangements.
Select Clients *Selvedge Magazine-London, UK *Esprit Travel and Tours *Penland School of Crafts *North Carolina State University *WARP Weave a Real Peace *Methodist University *MINNA-Goods *Smockingbird Kids
Tell us how we can put a program together for you! Send an email firstname.lastname@example.org
- WEAVE Podcast: Oaxaca Coast Textiles & Tour
- NY Times, Weavers Embrace Natural Dye Alternatives
- NY Times, Open Thread–Style News
- NY Times, 36-Hours: Oaxaca, Mexico
- Cooking Classes–El Sabor Zapoteco
- Currency Converter
- Fe y Lola Rugs by Chavez Santiago Family
- Friends of Oaxaca Folk Art
- Hoofing It In Oaxaca Hikes
- Living Textiles of Mexico
- Mexican Indigenous Textiles Project
- Museo Textil de Oaxaca
- Oaxaca Lending Library
- Oaxaca Weather
- Taller Teñido a Mano Natural Dyes
Oaxaca Matria Therapeutic Art Garden: Cultural Center for Music and More
Matria Jardin Arterapeutico is the manifestation of artist Maurico Cervantes’ imagination. With the help of many, many others plus foundation funding, a decayed, roofless 17th century colonial building in Oaxaca’s historic center has become a cultural mecca. It is at once a moveable art installation, organic garden, educational teaching center, music and arts venue, and inspiration for innovation — a fine example of what to do with aging space with great bones.
Despite a late Sunday afternoon rainstorm (much needed, I might say), Matria hosts Sandmann and The Voodoo Cat, a three-person cabaret-style ensemble for our listening pleasure. Tucked inside the only area with shelter from the sky, Kati Sandmann (vocals, guitar), Dabeat Morales (percussion), and Ricardo Chavez (guitar) perform as if the 40 of us is a sold-out audience of hundreds at Carnegie Hall.
Their range goes from blues to folk to swing to rock with a hint of jazz. Kati’s voice sounds like Edith Piaf or Lotte Lenya, extending from alto to alto soprano. She sings multi-lingual in German, French, Spanish and English. It is at times atonal, dissonant and altogether appealing. I hear Kurt Weill and Berthold Brecht, Bob Dylan, Jacques Brel, Johnny Cash, Leonard Cohen, and Ray Charles.
Not too long into the concert the skies opened and out came the umbrellas. The band played on — unflappable. We stayed, enraptured with the sound, and the rain coming through the porous roof. At this moment, church bells sound calling people to Sunday evening mass. The bells blend perfectly with the music. Two standing ovations brought two more songs before the concert ended. When in Oaxaca during the summer, the best advice is to carry a paragua when going out.
The concert ended. The skies cleared. I returned to the courtyard, rain reflected on organic food, in mirrors, in the bathtub lily pond encased in an old bed frame.
Lots of ideas here for gardening and imagining and meditating.
Matria Jardin Arteterapeutico, Murguia #103, between Macedonio Alcala and 5 de Mayo. Check out their Facebook page for upcoming events.