presentation, checked out a couple of artisan markets and walked everywhere. It's been
eight years since I visited Oaxaca and I saw many outward changes- lots of cars & traffic, abandoned buildings, more graffiti, empty restaurants and fewer tourists. It's taken a
long time for the area to come back from the government and teacher wars of 2005-2006.
The people welcomed us everywhere we went and appreciated our interest in their work
and culture.Businesses, restaurants, hotels and homes set-up altars or ofrendas to honor their loved ones
who have died.
Pablo took us on an artisan tour of the Central Valley. We visited the home and studio of painter
Román Andrade Llaguno and his wife, Marta. He paints with gouache on Mexican amate paper
made of tree bark. His whimsical paintings contain the colors and symbols of Oaxaca with a
strong emphasis on family life. At the home of Zapotec weavers in Teotitlán de Valle, the use
of natural dyes interested us: cochineal- for red the color of life, indigo for blue; marigolds or
cempazuchiles for yellow; moss for green and nuts for shades of brown.Often around a corner, we heard a band and then saw a calendra or parade from a local church, women dressed in their traditional clothes, throwing out candy to everyone on the street and celebrating Día de Muertos.