Abraham Mauricio Salazar, Papel Amate artist

From 2007 after meeting the artist in Mexico

Abraham Mauricio Salazar, Master Painter, Papel Amate

Abraham Mauricio Salazar

Master Painter, Papel Amate

Abraham Mauricio Salazar is a Nahuatl Indian living in Oaxaca, Mexico. For most of his life, Salazar has been working as a farmer, painter, and teacher. His primary medium is papel amate, a folk craft tradition that his people have used for over two millennia. The painting style takes its name from the medium that is used ñ ìpapel amateî, paper that is made from the bark of the ficus tree.

ìBeginning in the early 20th century, several tribes among the Nahuatl language speakers of Mexico began developing papel amate paintings as an art-form primarily for trade or sale to tourists or other outsiders. Today, examples of the form can be found throughout southwestern Mexico, particularly in the states of Guerrero, Oaxaca, and Jalisco, ranging from low-art and very inexpensive prints on papel amate to elaborate narrative scenes that can fetch much higher prices in city markets and fine art galleries.î

From the article on Amate on Wikipedia

Abraham is one of the finest, most highly respected traditional bark painters in the State of Oaxaca. In a highly distinctive style, he depicts the sights and sounds of his home village through sophisticated compositions and juxtapositions of color. Along with his brother, Roberto Mauricio Salazar, Abraham has painted on papel amate since he was a child, learning from his father and other family members. Though unschooled in any formal setting, Salazar has studied art and executes pastoral scenes of Mexican campesino (agricultural) life that are outstanding examples of the form.

While many in the tradition never become known for their works, Abraham was the subject of a seminal (now out-of-print) book on the high-quality papel amate paintings of the Nahuatl. He has also contributed illustrations to Antonio SaldÌvar’s CICLO M¡GICO DE LOS DÕAS. TESTIMONIO DE UN POBLADO INDIGENA MEXICANO, (Magical Cycles of the Days. Stories of the Indigenous Towns of Mexico) published in Mexico City in 1985.

January 30th, 2007 by