No Mas! Alebrijes Collection

Alebrijes Collection at No Mas!

Alebrijes Studio of Jacobo y Maria Angeles

Best of Mexico-No Mas! ProductionsBest of Mexico-No Mas! ProductionsThe Alebrijes workshop of Jacobo y Maria Angeles has perfected the art known as Alebrijes, fantastical creatures carved of “copal” wood, over the last three decades. The artists combine the elements of nature, such as plants, flowers, and animals, acknowledging the Zapotec culture, with unbounded creativity and excellent color combinations. The fusion of wood carvings with the intricate painting have great expression and movement that some may even find spiritual.

We had the pleasure of meeting Jacobo Angeles at our store, No Mas! Productions, on April 9, 2017. This marks his second visit to No Mas! in Atlanta and we were fortunate to meet him in person and share our love for Mexico, the arts, sustainability, and life. Having previously been to his workshop in San Martin Tilcajete, Oaxaca, we have personally experienced the process of making Alebrijes.

Woodcarving of Alebrijes

Art of Alebrijes, "Coyote", JMA-021_1The “copal” tree, which is also used as incense, supplies the wood used for carving Alebrijes. It is dried for months before being used. The woodcarver claims to let the branch “speak to him” and dictate what final form will result from the hours of carving it takes to make each Alebrije.  Several levels of carving transpire; rough to fine are followed by intense sanding .

Art of Alebrijes, "Simbolos Zapotecas"The Art of Painting Alebrijes

In the “pueblo” of San Martin Tilcajete, Oaxaca, Mexico you will find most of the townspeople creating the art of Alebrijes.  Generations of artists have come to know that the value of their special talent is proportional to the time invested and detail of each creation.  The Alebrijes are painted with designs consisting of Zapotec symbols: adoration, respect, fertility, village…to name a few.

Certificate of Authenticity

Each originally designed Alebrije of Jacobo & Maria Angeles come with a Certificate of Authenticity; they are popular among collectors of master folk art. The certificate consists of a photo of the Alebrije; a description of the art of Alebrijes; a certificate number; the name of the Alebrije, with its number in series; and the description & meaning of the Zapotec symbols used in the design.

Sustainability

After personally meeting Jacobo Angeles, we soon saw that his love for the art of Alebrijes is matched by his respect for people and the environment. When visiting his workshop in San Martin Tilcajete last year, it was obvious that he treated his employees with respect. From the clothes they wear to the beautiful “outdoor break room”, it was clear that Jacobo created something special in the management of his studio as well. His passion extends to realizing that his craft is limited by the material from which the Alebrijes are made: the copal tree. He plants numerous trees for each one he harvests, ensuring the craft for future generations. He is generous in sharing his story with others and teaching the locals so that his legacy lives on.

No Mas! is proud to feature Jacobo & Maria Angeles as one of 500 artisans from Mexico in our Artisan Market & Mexican Restaurant in Atlanta. We hope you come visit our “Best of Mexico” concept when looking for something to do in downtown Atlanta.
Art of Alebrijes, "Borrego", sheep, JMA-025_1Art of Alebrijes: "Conejo", rabbit, JMA-020_1 Art of Alebrijes, "Huron", ferret, JMA-026_1 Art of Alebrijes, "Buho", owl, JMA-024_1
Art of Alebrijes, "XoloitzcuintliPerro", JMA-022_1

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