Category Archives: Featured Items

Gone Fishin’

These kitties know when it’s time to put up the “Gone Fishing” sign and take a little break!
Left: Cat on turtle by Albert Perez Muñoz of La Union Tejalapan, $82.
(Apologies!This item has been SOLD)
Right: Whiskered fishing cat by Joaquin Hernandez Vasquez of San Martin Tilcajete, $44.
(Apologies!This item has been SOLD)

A library like no other…

P1030057We were very excited to meet with Maestro Martin Melchor once again in March, and to re-stock more of his famous taxi-driving giraffes and bicycle-riding zebras, but imagine our surprise and delight when he also showed us this little library scene! The jaguar child is climbing the ladder to the top of the bookshelf, putting away some volumes, while the studious adult jaguar remains absorbed by a volume of Mayan history.P1030058

This darling set costs $245.00 plus 16.00 for shipping.

A Marvelous Menagerie

Noahs' Ark by Armando and Antonia Jimenez

This large ark by Armando and Antonia has animals looking out of the portholes on both sides and and some impatient passengers waiting to get on board! We’re not quite sure how everyone will fit in there but we’ll leave the logistics to Noah, who is conspicuously absent and probably sitting down somewhere with his head in his hands. (This item has sold, sorry! You can special order one like it; talk it over with us!)

New Precolumbian reproductions in Ceramic

Here are two of our newest acquisitions in the category of Precolumbian reproductions in ceramic. The small figure is believed to be Tlaloc; it measures 9″ in height; $105 plus shipping. The seated figure, in the style of artifacts from Jalisco, is quite large and heavy, measuring 14″ in height; $240 plus shipping. We like them as a pair. :)


Seated figure:

Our 9th Anniversary, Report from the Road and Sneak Peeks

Hello Friends! As we approach May 5th, we thought we’d mention that we saw a wonderful feature on Pittsburgh Today Live this morning about Cinco de Mayo with Heinz History Center CEO Andy Masich. Mr. Masich informed us that this year is the 150th Anniversary of the Battle of Puebla. A video of the entire segment is available for viewing on the Pittsburgh Today Live site right now. As some of you know, Cinco de Mayo is also the anniversary of our Murray Avenue store location and ordinarily we make a bit of a to-do about that, but Jean-Pierre is hard at work on the feature film “Promised Land”, and so we promise that next year, on our 10th anniversary, we’ll throw a proper fiesta for everyone!
In March we had the good fortune to return to our favorite shopping destinations: Mexico City, Puebla and Oaxaca. These roads always lead past the much beloved El Popo and Iztaccíhuatl. Luckily for us, a spate of eruptions from El Popo, as well as some strong earthquakes all began occurring after we were safely back home! Puebla was bustling as always and at every turn jacarandas in full bloom filled hearts with gladness:
Most of the time was spent in finding new acquisitions of Talavera, but I did manage to fit in a quick visit to our dear old friend, the Great Cathedral.
Here is a beautiful example of one of our new finds in Talavera, a unique chalice that we hope will go to a very deserving priest serving a Latino community.(sorry, it did…SOLD!)

On the first stroll down the Alcala upon arrival in Oaxaca, we were amazed to realize our good fortune at the chance to see the 2501 Migrantes exhibit by Alejandro Santiago. When standing or walking amongst the Migrantes, one felt their presence most distinctly and it was a truly beautiful and unforgettable experience. Though we already placed an album of these images on the store Facebook page, we include them some of them here:

There were other beautiful views to be had from the balconies along Alcala, including azaleas in bloom and Tehuanas strolling:

Our next day began in Mitla, on a bright sunny morning with true blue skies and long stark shadows.

The beauty of the mysterious temples, the bells and birdsongs of Mitla are something we will always remember…

The rest of our Mitla images are in this album on Facebook.
Remember to click on images here to view full sized. So from Mitla we proceeded to Teotitlan del Valle, where more extraordinary views awaited…

We were there for more of their famous Zapotec rugs, of course, and rugs we saw, from the sublime to the silly …

An example of dye making and spinning wheel demonstration materials:

..the finest rugs have only natural and organic origin dyes, two of the most commonly used are the recently infamous cochineal beetle and indigo. An example of one that came back with us:

We heard it long before we saw it, beautiful yet plaintive music, from far at the end of the main avenue that runs the length of Teotitlan. I said to Jean-Pierre, “That definitely sounds funereal”. And by the time the procession reached us, we saw that it was indeed.
Like so much that we see when in Mexico, it was a beautiful amalgamation of the ancient ways and the new.

The following day began with a reunion with the renowned Aguilar family of Ocotlan and Maestro Carlomagno Pedro Martinez of San Bartolo Coyotepec. Don Carlomagno, in addition to being a celebrated artist, with his spare and elegant, and always eloquent style in Barro Negro, is also the Director of the Museo Estatal de Arte Popular in Oaxaca. We acquired two wonderful new pieces from him but can’t yet show them to you as they haven’t arrived! But here is one that we already have, and a shot of Don Carlomagno in the courtyard of the Museo.

Demetrio Garcia AguilarFrom there we met up with Demetrio Garcia Aguilar, another Great Maestro and favorite of collectors from all over the world. The piece that Demetrio is holding there, called “Dualidad”, came back with us. P1020780

P1020867We missed seeing Josefina Aguilar, who wasn’t at home at the time, but nonetheless came back with some beautiful things from her, like this Virgin of Guadalupe. (sorry, the Guadalupe has sold!) We also visited with both Guillermina and Irene, and in addition to buying more new things from them, we also asked them both to pose for new pix for us…

Below, a few more sneek peaks from other finds from San Martin and Arrazola, by Jacobo and Maria Angeles Ojeda, Armando and Antonia Jimenez and Bertha Cruz(sorry, the cat by Armando has sold!):




A darling, giant painted gourd with gatos was too irresistible to leave behind!

And so we’ll leave it at this; there is still more to report, more photos to share and more new things still arriving and and being photographed as well, so next time we’ll pick it where we left off. ¡Until then, saludos!

One Wild Ride

Bull Riding Motorcycle

…Just unwrapped and straight to the store window, this amazing bull (at least he has a bulls’ horns, not so sure about that crazy long tail!) riding a motorcycle, by Joaquin Hernandez. He’s a big guy, measuring 25″ long and 18″ high. The details on this piece are wonderful, from the very finely executed miniature painted designs in a bold color palette, to the riders’ two companions, a calavera on the front and a devil on the back. $475 plus $45 for shipping. Call or email if you’d like some other closeup views. We knew this was meant for someone very special as soon as we laid eyes on it, perhaps you can tell us who?! (click on image for a full sized view)

Valentine Gifts from the Heart of Mexico

Cupid is on the move and Valentine’s Day is just around the corner! Fear not, we have ideas for you, like this flying wooden cupid from Guerrero, for $90.

We have plain and painted tin hearts in magnet size and regular ornament sizes, plain or painted, with mirrors or without, from 2.50-18.00.
…And then there are hearts covered in milagros, from 27.00-30.00:

…and hearts that are boxes, in barro negro, Xalitla style painting, or a pair of lovesick calaveras, from $16-18.
There are painted tin heart ornaments with messages of love for $17, hearts in pewter with natural flowers embedded in lucite for $26, and hearts with mirrors for $18.

Above: one perfect tin box with a red, red heart affixed for $39. Below: Valentine cards and sterling silver pendant and earring set with natural flowers, $49.

Above:Winged wooden hearts by Jacobo and Maria are new and specially priced at $40

Right: Costume colored wire hearts come in both pendants and earrings, in assorted colors and sizes, between $13-18. Left: Every heart and soul (and body!) is warmed by hot chocolate and coffee, and we have the finest of both, from Oaxaca and Chiapas, from $10-14. Fair trade, you ask? But of course.

Is there more? Oh, yes! But we’ll leave it at that, and entreat you to come in and see for yourselves. Hope to see you soon..until then, may your Valentine’s Day (and every day) be filled with lots of love…


“Seedlings” by Jaime and Aisha Roman

We’re happy to introduce you to husband and wife artist team Aisha and Jaime Roman and their whimsical “Seedlings”. Aisha is from Veracruz, Mexico and Jaime from Puerto Rico, but they currently live and work in Pittsburgh, where they began their small business,
Three Rivers Hammocks. Please visit their Facebook page and become a fan (and ours as well, if you aren’t one already)! You can also see many more images of their Seedlings there.

In addition to their beautiful hammocks, they also started making little painted animals out of wire and seeds, seed pods, wood beads and feathers. All of the seeds and pods are imported from Mexico. These little creatures are very reasonably priced at $10 each and are now available in the store. As always, please remember you can click on these images for a full sized view.

Enter the Dragon…

…Wishing all who observe the lunar Chinese New Year a peaceful, joyous and prosperous Year of the Dragon! To those who want to celebrate with it a special piece by Jacobo and Maria Angeles Ojeda, we offer this beauteous green dragon for $185.00.

Happy Hanukkah!

Menorah from Izucar de Matamoros

Happy Hanukkah everyone! It’s been a very busy few days at the store, with only enough time to post this beautiful example of a menorah from Izucar de Matamoros, in barro policromado…may your festival of lights be joyous!