Tucked behind the tall 17th century heavy wood doors of an imposing colonial residence at Isabel la Catolica 97 is Victor Arts Populares Mexicanas. There is no sign, only a small poster affixed to the only window facing the street.
Don’t knock on wood, the guard admonished me, after I did several times. He instructed me to use the original brass knocker now burnished with age. I smiled, assured him I would behave myself next time, and made my way up to the second floor where there are three rooms stuffed with an amazing collection of new and vintage collectibles from all the important craft villages of Mexico.
Here I met Pilar Fosado Vazquez (above left) and her assistant. Pilar continues to run the shop her father founded many years ago.
Take note: Hours are limited. The shop is open 12:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. Tel. (55) 55-12-12-63. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. There is a Facebook page, too. But the shop recently relocated and most of the information available online is not updated.
The family works with a silversmith in the State of Mexico (Estado de Mexico) to recreate outstanding jewelry pieces in the style of Frida Kahlo. Some are embellished with coral, turquoise, garnet, onyx and obsidian. The workmanship is excellent and the prices are moderate for the quality.
There is lots of handmade tin, papier mache, textiles, and the Huichol art is of particular fine quality. Some of the pieces for sale are over forty years old.
I searched out this spot to take people who attended the last Looking for Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo art history tour, where we studied the famed Mexican muralists (Rivera, Orozco and Siquieros) and visited Casa Azul and the Dolores Olmedo Patiño Museum. There are THREE spaces open for our August repeat program!
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