Handmade Xoloitzcuintle Sculpture (Mexico)

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Handmade Xoloitzcuintle Sculpture (Mexico)

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brand Novica

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The sun illuminates a mysterious yellow cat, while sunflowers and hummingbirds decorate its body. Invoking the power of Old Sol, Zeny and Reyna transform found pieces of copal wood into an exquisite alebrije. These fanciful sculptures are a traditional folk art in Oaxaca, once based on twenty totems but today representing all kinds of animals. They take their name from a Caló gypsy word for "something difficult, tangled, confusing or fantastic."

Because each alebrije is individually created work of folk art, shapes will vary slightly.

Product Features
  • Some assembly required
  • Hand-crafted item -- color, size and/or motif may vary slightly
  • Signed by the artist
  • Package Includes : Alebrije sculpture
  • County Of Origin : Mexico
  • Colors : Yellow
  • Material : Copal wood
  • Dimensions : 8.75" H x 6" W x 4.7" D

Story behind the art :Our parents were master carvers and they taught each of us when we were little kids. We studied different things too, but what we really like to do is crafting alebrijes and continue with our families' traditions. I still recall the first piece I ever carved. It was a duck and it got sent to the Museum of Light in San Antonio! Since then I've had the good fortune to exhibit my work in different museums and galleries in the U.S. - the first one was in Arizona when I was only 14 years old. Now Reyna and I exhibit together, and some of our alebrijes are on show in Israel and in Germany. Our work has also been sponsored by a renowned Mexican stationary company, who transformed our wood sculptures into paper. Reyna and I have different styles when it comes to alebrijes, and when we got married we decided to combine our ideas, creating our own version: our artistic identity where color and sculpture have a specific meaning. And now we share our love for this art with our children, who will preserve their family legacy. What we have taken from our culture is that we left the trees and recovered our own life. Our raw materials include reclaimed tree trunks and branches as well as roots from dead trees, or the ones that we find in fields and rivers. We use the dust that comes off after sanding a piece to fill in the cracks that a piece of wood may have, and we use the thorn of a maguey to paint the more delicate motifs. Each alebrije is crafted by hand. The government of Oaxaca and the Tourist Ministry have both recognized our work as and named us master wood artisans and for promoting this cultural art form across the borders. In 2012, we received an award during Mexico's National Exhibition of Artesanias (ENART) for our sculpture 'The Wild Bull of the Sun and Day. Our inspiration comes from life's essential elements: the sun, the moon, the wind, water and fire, as well as the main symbols of our Zapotec culture. They are related to animals, flowers, insects, the cycle of life, and time. Regardless, we began to teach and I started carving a log of wood into a bear, and this kid was amazed by the magic of transforming wood into an animal. I caught his attention and I helped him make a sponge from a block of floral foam. He ate, and then drew a picture of me, calling me 'art boy.' Apparently the experience contributed to him coming out of his depression. When she told us this, we felt a great sense of satisfaction. We had no idea how much we could help someone - a child - through our art. We Look upon Novica as a door that opens the world where Reyna and I can show people our work. We would like to express our thanks to all of you who find interest in the wonderful world of Mexican alebrijes."

The handcrafted touch of artisan skill creates variations in color, size and design. If buying two of the same item, slight differences should be expected. Note: Color discrepancies may occur between this product and your computer screen.

Country of Origin: Mexico


Item #
Season or Holiday
All Seasons
Product Features
3.3 In. X 3.1 In. X 6.0 In.
Model Number

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