We return to Tzintzuntzan – ruins, pottery and sculpture


The Sunday trip to Tzintzuntzan with market crowds and tour buses had been sufficiently exhusting to require a return in less turbulent times. The Tarascan ruin – fortification like with five rounded outjuttings – looms over the town and the fertile surroundings. Used for cerimonial purposes and presumably constructed over many years [centuries?], clearly shows both a level of organization and that the area had sufficent food and labour to devote to such large permanent investment. The associated museum contains some example of very pretty pottery …

We then sought out local potter and acknowledged treasure of the area, Sr Manuel Moreles.

I hope this link will open to a site/s that show some of Manuel’s great style and technique.

We asked about the number of local potteries – he estimated at about 20 – and tried to get an explaination as to why their work as such a race to the bottom price and quality wise. Plates suitable for dinnerware at 10 pesos each seemed to us to hardly pay for clay and slip much less and other costs. Manuel was not totally clear – he acknowlwdged that many valued volume over quality which would take more time. But he was not totally clear and my Spanish not sufficient to engage in the ‘why is that debate’ that is to say why not produce less but of higher artistic quality and hence sell more and at higher prices … ah well many things in life remain mysteries.

We also stopped by some of the roadside stone sculpture – some very imaginative pieces there were too:

Footnote – having banged on about the pottery, we found a cheap piece from near Quiroga, at least that is what the seller told us, in a little plaza Friday market in Patzcauro – so there.




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